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February 24, 2021

Stocks edge lower on FATF angst

Business

February 24, 2021

Stocks on Tuesday got off to a winning start cheering the narrowing of current account deficit in January, but late selling mostly owing to FATF anxiety turned the tide, dealers said.

Pakistan Stock Exchange’s (PSX) KSE-100 shares index shed 0.35 percent or 161.29 points to close at 45,728.75 points. KSE-30 lost 0.39 percent or 73.64 points to close at 18,985.45 points.

As many as 359 scrips were active of which 135 advanced, 205 declined and 19 remained unchanged. Volumes were flat at 718.226 million shares compared with 722.052 million on Monday.

Topline Securities in a note said the futures rollover and the ongoing virtual FATF plenary session kept the market in check.

Drawing strength from rising international oil prices, the E&P sector became the major gainer of the day, where OGDC, PPL, and POL cumulatively added 50 points to the benchmark index, the brokerage said.

Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Corp said stocks were battered amid major earning announcements on uncertainty over FATF decision on Pakistan’s exit from the grey list.

Oil scrips outperformed on surging global crude oil prices; however, political uncertainty and concerns over weak global equities pulled the index down, Mehanti said.

An analyst at Arif Habib Limited said market traded in a narrow range, where E&P sector remained positive through the session on the back of an uptrend in crude oil prices; however, this upside in energy stocks remained in check.

The analyst added that downtrend continued in banks, cement, oil, and gas marketing companies post announcement of results, while technology stocks saw reversal after

hitting session’s high and closed in red.

Danish Ladhani at JS Global Capital said profit-booking brought KSE-100 index down from an intraday high of 194 points to a low of 227 points before the closing.

“With FATF meetings underway, we expect the market to remain volatile ahead and recommend investors to avail any downside as an opportunity to build positions in the textiles, steel and refinery sectors,” Ladhani added.

Adamjee Insurance in its CY20 result reported consolidated earnings of Rs5.93/share and announced a cash payout of Rs1.25/share. The scrip gained 1.1 percent.

Byco Petroleum declined 5.0 percent after reporting 1HFY21 consolidated earnings of Rs0.12/share. Long steel producer Agha Steel surged 4.8 percent, while its competitor Mughal Steel gained 1.2 percent on reports that steel rebar prices could cross Rs150,000/ton owing to a rise in scrap prices.

Sapphire Textile, up Rs59 to close at Rs1,059/share, and Premium Textile, up Rs20.96 to close at Rs300.46/share, emerged as the top gainers of the day.

Sunrays Textile, down Rs62.88 to close at Rs775.62/share, and Service Industries, down Rs21.03 to end at Rs918.33/share took major hits.

Worldcall Telecom recording a trade of 84.28 million shares led the volumes and gained 09 paisas to close at Rs1.64/share. It was followed by Byco Petroleum that posted a trade of 70.425 million shares, gaining 55 paisas to close at Rs10.42/share.

Media Times Ltd was the third highest volume-maker with 55.43 million shares. It gained 31 paisas to finish at Rs4.07.