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PSX sees longest bull run since Jan 2018

KARACHI: There was never a dull moment at the stock market in the outgoing week as the KSE-100 index continued to amass gains in all five trading sessions.

The benchmark surged by 1,139 points (3.3 per cent) and closed the last session at 36,190, knocking down the 36,000 barrier.

That saw the bull-dominated market in a buying spree that completed 11th consecutive session with gains of 2,478 points (7.4pc) marking the longest bullish spell since January 2018.

Investors’ fervour was at its peak on Thursday when the volume rose to an incredible 467 million shares, the highest turnover in 147 sessions since Dec 5, 2019. Traded value also went up to $94m, the figure last witnessed on April 21. Year-to-date, the Pakistan market has provided return of 5.1pc.

More positives which market analysts could think of included jump in State Bank’s foreign exchange reserves, reduction in mark-up on Long Term Financing Facility (from 6pc to 5pc) and Temporary Economic Refinance Facility (from 7pc to 5pc) as well as extension in deferment of principal amount facility. All of that coming on top of the policy rate to 7pc.

Other events to cheer were the rise in cement sales by 30pc in June, 19pc higher sales of oil marketing companies and fall in trade deficit by 27pc in FY20. Cement makers also were reported to have increased price by Rs20 a bag.

All that was fuelled by the National Coordination Committee on Housing, Construction and Development deciding to coordinate and facilitate the affordable housing schemes for low-income.

In the market related event, the PSX announced that it would revert back to the pre-coronavirus trading timings from upcoming week

Foreign selling clocked in at $9m with outflow witnessed in commercial banks at $2.9m and cement $2.3m. On the domestic front, major buying was reported by insurance at $4.6m and companies $2.8m.

According to brokerage Arif Habib Ltd, sector-wise positive contributions came from commercial banks, higher by 495 points, cement 141 points, oil and gas exploration companies 135 points, automobile assembler 82 points and oil and gas marketing companies 69 points.

Whereas decliners were power generation and distribution, lower by 23 points, and fertiliser 17 points.

Scrip-wise gains were led by Habib Bank, up 141 points, Pakistan Petroleum 70 points, United Bank 65 points, National Bank 46 points and Indus Motor 43 points.

Going forward, market pundits were generally optimistic about the continuation of bull run. Their premise was based on declining Covid-19 cases which raises hopes of paving way for enhanced business activity.

Due to improved foreign exchange reserves, the rupee-dollar parity was thought to remain stable. All that would keep investors’ hopes high on stocks, particularly in the absence of competition from any alternative asset class.

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