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Stocks advance on macroeconomic cues


The Pakistan Stock Exchange managed to post decent gains on Friday, as the benchmark KSE-100 index, after staying in positive territory throughout the day, added 117 points to close the week on a positive note.

News reports about remittances hitting an all-time high at $2.8 billion in March 2022 were widely cheered by market players as they opted to make fresh stock purchases across the board.

Moreover, the continuously appreciating Pakistani rupee against the US dollar bolstered investors’ confidence. However, the prevailing political tension in the country capped gains at the bourse.

Earlier, the trading session commenced on a positive note and before midday the benchmark index, with minor oscillations, touched an intra-day high of 46,785 points.

The index remained in the green zone throughout the day. However, owing to late-session profit-taking, especially in refinery stocks, it shed some of the gains to settle with a decent increase for the day.

At close, the benchmark KSE-100 index recorded an increase of 117.11 points, or 0.25%, to settle at 46,601.54 points.

Topline Securities, in its report, said that a positive session was observed at the stock exchange, as the benchmark index increased by 0.25% to close at 46,602.

Major contribution to the index came from Meezan Bank, Engro Corporation, Fauji Fertiliser Company, Habib Metropolitan Bank and Dawood Hercules Corporation, as they cumulatively added 112 points to the index, Topline said.

A report of Arif Habib Limited stated that the market stayed in the green zone throughout the day.

Among economic indicators, the Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI) for the week ended April 14, 2022 recorded a decrease of 0.68% week-on-week, while it increased by 16.44% on a year-on-year basis, the report said.

Moreover, large-scale manufacturing (LSM) output increased by 7.8% year-on-year in the first eight months of fiscal year 2021-22, it added.

“Main board activity remained dull but hefty volumes were recorded in third-tier stocks. In the last trading hour, profit-taking was witnessed, especially in the refinery sector,” the AHL report said.

Sectors contributing to the performance included fertiliser (+45.7 points), banks (+37.9 points), exploration and production (+22.3 points), investment banks (+14.7 points) and refinery (+11.6 points).

JS Global analyst Neelam Naz said that the benchmark index, after touching an intra-day high of 46,785 points, closed at 46,601, up 117 points day-on-day.

Cnergyico PK (-0.4%), WorldCall Telecom (-0.5%), Ghani Global Holdings (+1.8%), Pakistan Refinery Limited (-2.9%) and Maple Leaf Cement (-2.1%) were the major contributors in terms of volume.

“Going forward, we recommend investors to sell on strength as the market approaches the 47,000 level and wait for major dips for fresh buying positions,” the analyst said.

Overall trading volumes dipped to 365.8 million shares compared with Thursday’s tally of 494.9 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs9.1 billion.

Shares of 335 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 161 stocks closed higher, 155 declined and 19 remained unchanged.

Cnergyico PK was the volume leader with 71.3 million shares, losing Rs0.03 to close at Rs6.72. It was followed by WorldCall Telecom with 31.7 million shares, losing Rs0.01 to close at Rs1.92 and Ghani Global Holdings with 24.97 million shares, gaining Rs0.38 to close at Rs21.79.

Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs76.9 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

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