KARACHI: The stock market hit a roadblock again on Thursday as investors failed to carry the momentum generated in Wednesday’s session into the next day.
Though the market gained close to 500 points in intra-day trading, the rally subsided in the face of heavy profit-taking and political turbulence. This came despite cherry-picking of stocks by institutional investors across notable index names.
At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index registered an increase of 45.23 points or 0.11% to settle at 40,498.87.
According to Elixir Securities, Pakistan equities hit the brake after Wednesday’s sharp bounce and closed little changed as midday gains that pushed the benchmark index higher by 1% were almost wiped out by profit-taking.
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“Stocks struggled to find clear direction at the open and traded volatile on lacklustre activity as politics topped the headlines and kept most participants at bay. Thereafter, oil stocks along with select notable names across cement and fertiliser sectors as well as sideboards posted modest gains on reported institutional interest,” Elixir said.
The index, however, could not sustain intra-day gains for long and succumbed to profit-taking at highs. Barring oil stocks, all sectors ended the day lower.
Major support to the index came from Oil and Gas Development Company (OGDC, +4.5%) and Pakistan Petroleum (PPL, +4.8%) that cumulatively contributed 170 positive points.
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“We see volatile trading tomorrow (Friday) with the index likely consolidating in a range of 500 points and holding the 40,000 level,” the report added.
Overall, trading volumes fell to 116.5 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 116.6 million.
Shares of 364 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 104 stocks closed higher, 242 declined while 18 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.7 billion.
Pak Elektron was the volume leader with 9.96 million shares, losing Rs2.60 to close at Rs56.12. It was followed by TRG Pak with 9.41 million shares, losing Rs1.54 to close at Rs31.66 and Azgard Nine with 7.92 million shares, losing Rs0.88 to close at Rs12.24.