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February 14, 2018
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Stocks inch up as financials recover

Business

February 14, 2018

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Stocks closed slightly up on Tuesday as blue-chip financial and energy shares as well as global equities recovered, however investors remained cautious of foreign selling, dealers said.

Analyst Mohammad Arbash at Elixir Securities said equities closed positive in-line with the rebound in global and regional markets. “The day started on a dull note with stocks trading sideways in the early hours, however buying interest from institutions crept up in select sectors as the day progressed,” he added.

Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) benchmark KSE-100 shares index gained 0.4 percent or 175.28 points to close at 43,690.36 points. KSE-30 shares index gained 0.48 percent or 103.26 points to close at 21,791.39 points. As many as 354 scrips were active of which 157 advanced, 183 declined and 14 remained unchanged. The ready market volumes stood at 203.68 million shares as compared with the turnover of 215.319 million shares a day earlier.

An analyst at Arif Habib Limited said market showed lacklustre activity amidst trading in the green zone, however, it lost the earlier gains in the last half-hour and selling pressure was seen in cement, autos, and steel sectors.

“Oil and Gas Development Company showed continued interest from local investors on the expectation of one-time large dividend, whereas the market also reacted to Supreme Court’s decision on pension liability of large banks,” the analyst added. Financials led gains with Habib Bank, up 3.4 percent and United Bank, up 2.3 percent coming in the limelight after the Supreme Court’s judgment that increases in minimum pension would only be applicable to future pension payments with no retrospective impact.

After financials, other sectors including oils and fertilisers also inched up and helped the index rise as much as 0.8 percent on the day, however cements stalled the momentum in late hours with Lucky Cement, down 1.1 percent and DG Khan, down 2.0 percent on profit-taking.

Going forward, analysts believe fear of foreign selling is likely to keep investors at bay.

Companies with highest gains included Khyber Tobacco, up Rs32.77 to close at Rs688.17/share, and Hinopak Motor, up Rs31.5 to close at Rs1.211.75/share.

Companies with most losses included United Brands, down Rs30.06 to close at Rs571.33/share, and Service Industries, down Rs21.99 to end at Rs893/share.

Highest volumes were witnessed in Azgard Nine with a turnover of 13.9 million shares. The scrip gained Rs1.0 paisas to close at Rs18.88/share. Engro Polymer was second with a turnover of 13.46 million shares. It gained 82 paisas to close at Rs28.43/share. TRG Pakistan was third with a turnover of 11.49 million shares. It shed 38 paisas to close at Rs38.75/share.

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