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July 16, 2020

Index slips lower on profit-taking as Fitch forecasts dull outlook


July 16, 2020

The capital market on Wednesday inched lower on profit-taking, ending a 13-session positive streak on technical grounds, as dismal analysis of fiscal outlook by Fitch Solutions further dampened investors’ sentiments, who were already reeling from foreign outflows in E&Ps, dealers said.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti from Arif Habib Corporations said, "Stocks closed bearish amid pressure on concerns for foreign outflows and rupee instability.”

Profit-taking was witnessed in selected scrips across the board, after the International Monetary Fund lowered projections for one percent growth in FY21 amid the prevailing economic uncertainty.

Reports of Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) approvals over re-liquified natural gas (RLNG) increase, up by 35 cent for SNGPL and SSGC up by 40 cents, as well as dismal analysis by Fitch solutions on fiscal outlook played a catalytic role for the negative close at the bourse, Mehanti added.

Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) benchmark KSE-100 shares index lost 0.18 percent or 66.19 points to close at 36,679.03 points level. KSE-30 shares index followed suit with a low of 0.22 percent or 34.37 points to end at 15,893.45 points level.

Of 386 active scrips, 147 moved up, 216 retreated, and 23 remained unchanged. The ready market volumes stood at 328.394 million shares, as compared with the turnover of 466.251 million shares in the previous session.

Topline Securities in its post-market note said, “PPL (Pakistan Petroleum Limited) closed 1.08 percent higher from the E&Ps sector, despite foreign selling, indicating strong interest and absorption.”

Moreover, Sui companies came under pressure through the day as Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) decided that their FY21 ERR was likely to hurt their cash flows, both Sui Northern Gas Pipeline Limited (SNGPL) and Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) as a result closed 5.32 percent and 4.02 percent lower, respectively.

Hino Pak and Ghani Industries Limited from the auto sector closed at their respective upper circuits following resumption of sales post easing of lockdown, the report said.

Salman Ahmad, head of institutional sales at Aba Ali Habib Securities, said, “The utilities came under fire after OGRA suggested some cut in the gas prices, which subdued overall tone in gas sector.”

In general the market has been now under the spell of technical correction after it entered in the overbought zone because of the continuous rise in share price. However, as soon as the market receives some fresh positive development, index would likely climb. Till that happens, it would remain range-bound, he added.

A leading trader said all eyes were now on the monetary policy announcement date. “To jump start the economy, businessmen want further cut in benchmark interest rate; trimming of 100 basis points will yield fresh activity in cement, steel and auto sectors,” the trader added.

The top gainers were Bata Pakistan, gaining Rs86.82 to close at Rs1,426.69/share, and Pakistan Tobacco, up Rs56.91 to finish at Rs1,597.91/share, while Unilever Foods, down Rs100.00 to close at Rs9,400.00/share, and Premier Sugar, losing Rs40.58 to close at Rs500.54/share, were the main losers.

Maple Leaf posted the highest volumes with 33.169 million shares, but gained Rs0.82 to end at Rs31.37/share.

Hascol Petrol turnover was the lowest with 6.239 million shares, whereas the scrip lost Re0.05 to end at Rs14.30/share.