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Stock market rises, aided by refinery sector


Bulls returned to the Pakistan Stock Exchange on Thursday who lifted the benchmark KSE-100 index by 319 points to nearly 46,500 points.

Investors were observed cherry-picking stocks that had dropped to attractive valuations during the bearish spell at the bourse last week.

Encouraged by the consistent uptrend in global crude oil prices, massive investment was seen going to the stocks of oil marketing companies at the Pakistan bourse, which aided the rally.

Moreover, a sharp recovery of the rupee over the past few days bolstered the confidence of market players.

After beginning trading with minor ups and downs, the market remained range bound during early hours before dropping to an intra-day low towards noon.

The second half of trading session saw renewed buying, which helped erase the losses and took the index into the green zone. Value hunting by investors accelerated the market’s advance towards the end.

At close, the benchmark KSE-100 index recorded an increase of 318.93 points, or 0.69%, to settle at 46,484.43.

A report of Arif Habib Limited stated that a positive session was observed at the Pakistan Stock Exchange due to stability of Pakistani rupee against the US dollar.

“A rally was witnessed in the refinery sector due to expectation of tremendous earnings in the upcoming financial result announcements,” it said. “Main board activity remained dull whereas hefty buying was witnessed in third-tier stocks.”

Across-the-board buying was observed in the last trading hour, which led the market to close in the green zone, the report said.

Topline Securities, in its report, stated that Pakistan equities closed on a positive note where the benchmark KSE-100 index settled at 46,484 (up 0.69%).

During the day, range-bound activity was witnessed in the first half, however, the market picked up momentum and the KSE-100 index touched an intra-day high of 344 points, it said.

Investor interest was witnessed mostly in fertiliser, refinery and cement sectors where Engro, Attock Refinery and Maple Leaf Cement closed higher.

JS Global analyst Neelam Naz said that the market witnessed another positive session where the index, after touching intra-day low of 46,054, recovered at the end of trading session. The index closed at 46,484, up 319 points day-on-day.

Total traded volume stood at 495 million shares with the highest contribution coming from Cnergyico PK (+16%), WorldCall Telecom (-2.5%), Flying Cement (+2.4%), Telecard Limited (-2.4%) and Maple Leaf Cement (+5.4%).

The refinery sector outperformed others with 20% contribution to the total volume on the back of news about the approval of refinery policy, she said.

“Going forward, we recommend investors to sell on strength as the market approaches the 47,000 level,” the analyst said.

Overall trading volumes rose to 494.9 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 474.6 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs11.7 billion.

Shares of 343 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 206 stocks closed higher, 118 declined and 19 remained unchanged.

Cnergyico PK was the volume leader with 99.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.94 to close at Rs6.75 It was followed by WorldCall Telecom with 36.9 million shares, losing Rs0.05 to close at Rs1.93 and Flying Cement with 33.9 million shares, gaining Rs0.23 to close at Rs9.9.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs116.5 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

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