Sunday May 19, 2024

Stocks jump 1.2pc to record high on IMF, Saudi investment hopes

By Our Correspondent
May 07, 2024
A person can be seen in the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) in this undated photo. —AFP/FIle
A person can be seen in the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) in this undated photo. —AFP/FIle

Stocks surged over one percent on Monday to close at an all-time high, driven by speculations ahead of Pak-IMF loan talks and hopes for Saudi investment, traders said.

The Pakistan Stock Exchange's (PSX) benchmark KSE 100-share Index gained by 862.15 points or 1.20 percent to close at 72,764.24 points. The highest index of the day remained at 73,060.74 points while the lowest level was recorded at 72,462.49 points. The KSE-30 index increased by 180.60 points or 0.77 percent to 23,775.45 points.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Corp said, “Stocks closed all-time high as investors weigh falling inflation to ease SBP policy and the government deliberations over privatisation of ailing SOEs.”

"Speculations ahead of Pakistan-IMF new loan talks, surging foreign currency reserves and likely accord with Saudi trade delegation to explore investment avenues played a catalytic role in record close in the prebudget rally at the PSX."

Traded shares increased by 126 million shares to 578.388 million shares from 452.155 million shares. The trading value slightly dropped to Rs24.518 billion from Rs24.542 billion. Market capital expanded to Rs9.886 trillion against Rs9.797 trillion. Of 389 companies active in the session, 258 closed in green, 108 in red and 23 remained unchanged.

Maaz Mulla, an analyst at Topline Securities, said the market's positive sentiment can be attributed to recent news indicating a 50-member Saudi team arriving for potential investments in Pakistan, along with expectations of an IMF mission visiting Pakistan this month to discuss a new programme.

Significant positive contributions to the index came from DAWH, FFC, ENGRO, ILP, and HUBC, collectively adding +360 points. Conversely, OGDC, MARI, SYS, IBFL, and NBP collectively contributed negatively, deducting -68 points from the index.

"DAWH closed at upper circuit on the back of its proposed restructuring notice that is expected to narrow the discount to its valuation," he said.

The highest increase was recorded in Sapphire Textile Mills Limited shares, which rose by Rs84.42 to Rs1,274.22 per share, followed by Unilever Pakistan Foods Limited, which increased by Rs67.52 to Rs19,447.50 per share. A significant decline was noted in Hoechst Pakistan Limited, which fell by Rs66.13 to Rs1,233.87 per share, followed by Sapphire Fibres Limited, which closed lower by Rs30.25 to Rs1,449.50 per share.

Brokerage Arif Habib Ltd stated that the equities market continued its upward momentum with another impressive one percent gain day-over-day, as the bounce from support levels gained momentum.

Cement and Pharma sectors outperformed notably, with significant gains seen in FCCL (+5.06 percent), DGKC (+2.94 percent), GLAXO (+7.5 percent), ABOT (+7.5 percent), and CPHL (+6.17 percent).

""The overall outlook remains positive, with the benchmark index expected to trade to new highs towards the 74,000 points mark," the brokerage said. "Cement and Pharma stocks continue to represent high probability alpha plays in the current market environment."

Pak Elektron remained the volume leader with 48.443 million shares which closed higher by Rs1.74 to Rs25.13 per share. Fauji Cement followed it with 40.362 million shares, which closed higher by Rs1.08 to Rs22.44 per share.

Other significant turnover stocks included K-Electric Ltd., WorldCall Telecom, Hascol Petrol, Pak Refinery, Fauji Foods Ltd, Pak Petroleum, PTCL and DGK Cement. In Future Market, 330 companies recorded trading, of which 239 increased, 87 decreased and 4 remained unchanged.