Stocks flat on the eve of policy rate decision

Our Correspondent
July 07, 2022

Stocks barely changed on Wednesday in a heavily guarded trade a day ahead of the monetary policy meeting amid deepening IMF loan concerns, traders said.KSE-100 Shares Index, the benchmark of...

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Stocks barely changed on Wednesday in a heavily guarded trade a day ahead of the monetary policy meeting amid deepening IMF loan concerns, traders said.

KSE-100 Shares Index, the benchmark of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), gained just 57.22 points or 0.14 percent to 41,159.79 points after touching a high and a low of 41,334.10 and 41,102.57 points, respectively, during the day trade.

Darson Securities said the bourse endured a range-bound session as cautious investors avoided taking fresh positions before announcement of upcoming monetary policy and lack of upbeat triggers.

“However, the index crawled back up in the green territory on cherry-picking,” the brokerage said, adding, but some fag-end profit taking trimmed some of the gains.

A report by Arif Habib Ltd said it was a truly sluggish session.

“Investor participation remained dry due to concerns over a rate hike in the upcoming monetary policy and rupee’s retreat against the dollar,” the brokerage said.

It said mainboard activity remained dull but decent volumes were recorded in the third tier stocks.

Sectors contributing to the performance included banks (+35.9 points), cement (+15.5 points), technology (13.9 points), power (+11.7 points), and oil marketing companies (+6.7 points).

KSE-30 Shares Index also ticked up by 25.17 points or 0.16 percent to 15,660.30 points compared with 15,635.13 points recorded in the last session.

Traded shares rose 22 million shares to 98.247 million shares from 76.890 million shares. The trading value increased to Rs2.690 billion from Rs2.398 billion. Turnover in the future contracts increased to 28.860 million shares from 20.052 million.

Market capital expanded to Rs6.904 trillion from Rs6.897 trillion. Out of 308 companies active in the session, 173 advanced, 115 retreated, while 20 remained unchanged.

Topline Securities said the market opened on a positive note over a decline in international oil prices, which led the market to make an intraday high of 232 points.

Initially interest was witnessed in the cement sector, which pushed LUCK, FCCL, PIOC, and MLCF to close higher, further HBL, HUBC, and TRG cumulatively added 36 points to the benchmark index, the brokerage said.

Unilever Foods surged by Rs249.50 to Rs24,249.50/share to become the best gainer of the day, followed by Allawasaya Textile that jumped Rs120.18 to Rs1,760/share.

Mehmood Textile was the worst performing stock of the day as it slumped Rs60 to Rs840/share, followed by Colgate Palm, down Rs55 to Rs2,195/share.

JS Research said investor sentiment would largely be driven by positive news from the IMF front. “We recommend investors to adopt a buy-on-dips strategy,” he advised.

Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Corp said stocks showed recovery amid speculations on likely release of $2 billion tranche under IMF’s almost resumed bailout programme and expectations of a not so aggressive monetary stance by the central bank.

Speculations in the earning season and record $4.6 billion receipts in Roshan Digital Accounts added to the positive sentiment, he said.

Agritech Limited was the most traded stock as it posted a turnover of 25.039 million shares and closed higher by 41 paisas to Rs7.60 per share. It was followed by Unity Foods Ltd, which recorded a trade of 5.391 million shares, rising by 10 paisas to Rs19.93/share.

Other volume-makers included Azgard Nine, Lotte Chemical, Sui Northern Gas Pipelines, Pakistan Refinery, WorldCall Telecom, Fauji Cement, TPL Properties, and G3 Technologies.

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