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Stocks post modest decline on lack of triggers

KARACHI: The stock market remained extremely dull and drab in range-bound trading in the absence of triggers and low volume. The KSE-100 index closed flat with minor fall of 15.53 points (0.05 per cent) at 33,840.05.

As investors stayed away from the market, the volume ended below the 60-million shares mark for the fourth consecutive session. The prime minister’s visit to Karachi along with his economic team failed to motivate investors as the woes of stock market seemed to have received no particular attention.

But an analyst said that moving forward, market could show some strength on the back of ongoing meetings of premier with business community to promote economic activity.

On the news front, the State Bank of Pakistan on Tuesday night received one billion dollars from International Monetary Fund (IMF) as the first tranche of bailout for balance of payments support. However, negative developments on the political side continued to be of concern to the investors.

The volume decreased by 33pc to 40.30m shares while value also dipped by 33pc to $10.3m as against $15.4m. Stocks that contributed significantly included Dost Steel, Quice Food, Maple Leaf Cement, Sui Northern Gas and Cherat Cement, which formed 29pc of total turnover.

During the intraday trading, index touched a low of 59 points and a high of 99 points. Foreign investors bought equity worth $1.22m, while individuals liquidated shares of $1.83m.

In cement, Cherat, Pioneer, Maple Leaf and DG Khan were gainers. Sectors contributing to the day’s performance incl­uded power generation, lower by 15 points, exploration and production 12 points, automobile assembler 9 points, fertiliser 5 points and pharmaceuticals 3 points.

Stocks that contributed positively included Sui Northern Gas, higher by 12 points, Habib Bank 12 points, Engro Corporation 11 points, Lucky Cement 7 points and Cherat Cement 3 point. On the other hand, decliners were Hub Power, down 19 points, ENgro Fertiliser 11 points, Pakistan Petroleum 7 points, Oil and Gas Development Company 5 points and Shifa International 4 points.

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