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September 25, 2020

Stocks seesaw to end shade lower; E&P weighs


September 25, 2020

Stocks on Thursday ended shade lower, clawing their way back up from deep intraday losses after a tumbling crude market brought the energy sector down in the absence of triggers amid global slump, dealers said.

Pakistan Stock Exchange’s (PSX) benchmark KSE-100 shares index lost 0.17 percent or 69.89 points to close at 41,806.37 points level, while ready volumes shrank to 434.885 million shares from 582.794 million in the previous session.

Topline Securities in a note said, “After a posting a low of 41,416 points during the day, the index recovered strongly, displaying resilience, and closing slightly lower”.

Declining international markets and the second-last day of rollover week led the investors to remain cautious, the brokerage added.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti from Arif Habib Corporation said, “Stocks closed lower in thin trade on concerns over slump in global equities and pressure on futures rollovers”.

Political uncertainty and concerns over plunging textile and cement exports in August 2020 contributed to negative close, Mehanti added.

KSE-30 shares index followed suit with a low of 0.09 percent or 15.57 points to end at 17,658.54 points level.

AA Soomro, managing director at KASB Securities, said, “With $90 million traded, the index is facing resistance in the absence of new triggers”.

This week was occupied with post APC (All Parties’ Conference) political noise, international markets volatility, and rising COVID-19 cases locally as well as internationally, Soomro said.

The current account surplus for August kept currency and stock market resilient, while Eurobond's probable issuance was expected to keep the sentiment alive and credit rating outlook positive, he added.

As many as 423 stocks were active on Thursday and of that total 142 gained, 258 retreated, and 23 stuck to status quo.

Sateesh Balani, research director at Ismail Iqbal Securities, said, “The market remained volatile amid ongoing rollover week, under-pressure global markets, and falling crude oil prices”.

“The cut-off yields remained unchanged in Wednesday’s treasury bills auction, which indicates that these rates might remain low in near term,” Balani added.

Salman Ahmad, head of institutional sales at Aba Ali Habib Securities, said “Capital market has been under consolidation phase and saw support on lower ends as the index at one stage was more than 300 points down, but recovered sharply”.

“The fundamentals are intact and need some positive developments on the economic front to bounce back; however, the government has been making strenuous efforts on FATF front and anything positive on this side may help the market get back in the green zone,” Ahmad added.

Top gainers were Ferozsons Laboratories, securing Rs29.28 to close at Rs419.71/share, and KSB Pumps, gaining Rs21.49 to finish at Rs308.09/share, while Nestle Pakistan, down Rs278.75 to close at Rs6,611.25/share, and Rafhan Maize, losing Rs50 to close at Rs8,350/share, suffered most losses.

With 40.527 million shares, K-Electric Limited was the volume leader, but lost Rs0.03 to end at Rs4.18/share, whereas Fauji Foods Limited’s turnover was the thinnest with 11.291 million shares, and it too shed Rs0.25 to close at Rs17.34/share.