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November 20, 2019

Index moves up; C/A surplus in focus


November 20, 2019

The capital market on Tuesday ended positive as the current account turned surplus in October 2019; however, uncertainty over the upcoming monetary policy kept investors from taking aggressive positions, dealers said.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti of Arif Habib Corp said bullish trend continued at the stock market, as investor weighed upbeat economic data, including current account surplus at $99 million and 238 percent jump in foreign direct investment during July-October 2019.

“Falling global crude oil prices and uncertainty over global equities invited mid-session pressure. Foreign inflows, speculations ahead of SBP policy rate decision this week and macroeconomic stability played a catalytic role in the bullish close.”

Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) benchmark KSE-100 shares index gained 0.4 percent or 152.81 points to close at 38,564.37 points. KSE-30 shares index gained 0.49 percent or 87.24 points to close at 17,831.68 points.

As many as 390 scrips were active, of which 187 advanced, 177 declined and 26 remained unchanged. The ready market volumes stood at 385.321 million shares as compared with the turnover of 466.079 million shares a day earlier.

An analyst at JS Global Capital said after nearly 3.5 years, the current account finally turned positive. “Judging by the run rate during four months of FY20, it appears the current account deficit for FY20 might stand at around $4.5 billion, which would be $2.0 billion less than the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) expectations of $6.7 billion,” a JS Global report noted.

Current account balance posted a $99 million surplus in October, up from a $284 million deficit in the previous month of September, the central bank reported on Monday. The October current account surplus was the nation’s first in almost four and a half years.

An analyst at Arif Habib Limited said the market moved up and down during the session. “Initially the index gained 500 points, but erased all the gains on profit booking. Activity picked pace again with index gaining again 350 points.”

Dealers said key stocks that sustained selling pressure included DG Khan Cement, Maple Leaf Cement, and Fauji Cement Company, while in the steel sector Mughal Steel saw trading at the lower circuit.

Among fertiliser, Engro made a recent high close at Rs345, but faced selling pressure which brought the price down to Rs338.

Analysts believe that during the remainder of FY20, the outcome of how the government manages FDIs, privatisation, flows in local currency government bonds and issuance of foreign currency debt remains to be seen, and this would have a direct bearing on the fate of the rupee.

Companies reflecting highest gains included Nestle Pakistan, up Rs58.75 to close at Rs6,335/share, and Colgate Palmolive, up Rs41 to close at Rs2,040/share.

Companies reflecting most losses included Pakistan Tobacco, down Rs124.5 to close at Rs2,374/share, and Unilever Foods, down Rs100 to end at Rs6,900/share.

Highest volumes were witnessed in K-Electric Limited with a turnover of 27.535 million shares. The scrip gained 5 paisas to close at Rs4.36/share.

Bank of Punjab was second with a turnover of 25.028 million shares. It shed 20 paisas to close at Rs11.06/share.

Dost Steels Limited was third with a turnover of 22.268 million shares. It shed 51 paisas to finish at Rs5.45/share.