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Business

October 13, 2017

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Stocks fall on political jitters; trim losses on foreign inflows

Stocks fall on political jitters; trim losses on foreign inflows

Stocks fell on Thursday and have now declined in each of the four trading sessions of the week as caution prevailed on ongoing political uncertainty in the country, dealers said.

However, the market rallied off its intraday lows, with traders saying final hour buying helped cover early losses that had pulled the benchmark index to touch 12-month intraday low.  “The index witnessed another volatile session on the back of investor skepticism regarding the political scenario in the country,” Maaz Mulla at JS Global Capital said.

The Pakistan Stock Exchange’s benchmark KSE-100 shares index shed 0.66 percent or 266.15 points to close at 40,237.53 points. KSE-30 shares index shed 0.75 percent or 154.62 points to close at 20,326.00 points. As many as 395 scrips were active of which 73 advanced, 306 declined and 16 remained unchanged.

The ready market volumes stood at 137.99 million shares as compared with the turnover of 129.563 million shares a day earlier. After a positive open, the market was pulled into red territory with cements leading losses on concerns of further price discounts by cement players in the northern region.

Maple Leaf Cement (MLCF), down 4.9 percent, hit limit down despite the company's announcement of commencement of its 40MW coal-fired power plant. DG Khan Cement (DGKC), down 2.6 percent and Lucky Cement (LUCK), down 1.2 percent, also weighed on the index.

“Sentiments were again dampened after the Election Commission of Pakistan issued a non-bailable arrest warrant against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf   chairman Imran Khan,” said an analyst at Elixir Securities.

Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Limited said stocks closed lower amid pressure across the board on investor concerns over economic uncertainty after $9 billion record trade deficit was reported for July-September 2017. “Foreign inflows, upbeat car sales and recovery in global crude prices invited mid-session support.”

Pakistan Oilfields (POL) closed at its upper circuit as it continued to gain investor's interest on its new oil and gas discovery in the Ikhlas block. Analysts see directionless market going ahead with politics being a dampener as former prime minister Nawaz Sharif and his family members are expected to be indicted by accountability court on corruption references.

Companies reflecting highest gains include Unilever Foods, up Rs240 to close at Rs6,800/share and Nestle Pakistan up Rs101 to close at Rs13,000/share. Companies reflecting most losses include Sanofi Aventis down Rs81.55 to close at Rs1549.45/share and Wyeth Pakistan down Rs45 to end at Rs1,635/share.

Highest volumes were witnessed in K-Electric with a turnover of 13.513 million shares. The scrip gained 02 paisas to close at Rs6.3/share. TRG Pakistan was second with a turnover of 8.214 million shares. It shed 95 paisas to close at Rs33.34/share. Aisha Steel Mill was third with a turnover of 7.319 million shares. It shed 55 paisas to finish at Rs16.50/share.

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