Volatility struck the Pakistan Stock Exchange on Tuesday and the KSE-100 index experienced a roller coaster ride as investors remained concerned about rising Covid-19 cases. Resultantly, the market gained just 33 points in a range-bound session.
A historic increase in workers’ remittances, which hit an all-time high of $29.4 billion in fiscal year 2020-21, had a little impact on the market.
Weak investor sentiment dented interest in index-heavy automobile, exploration and production and oil marketing sectors where a majority of the stocks closed in the red.
Earlier, trading began on a positive note and the index inched closer to the 47,600-point mark in early hours. At that point, the investors resorted to profit-booking, which interrupted the ascent and dragged the market down.
The selling pressure intensified as the session progressed, which restrained the market from posting lofty gains.
At close, the benchmark KSE-100 index recorded an increase of 33.42 points, or 0.07%, to settle at 47,480.50.
A report of Arif Habib Limited stated that investors maintained a cautious approach towards building positions in the wake of capital gains tax liability, which was due to be settled by the middle of the month, when a sell-off was expected by other than corporate and institutional investors.
The technology sector led the KSE-100 index with NetSol hitting its upper circuit and TRG Pakistan and Systems Limited experiencing brisk trading.
The power sector remained muted due to concerns over Petroleum Division’s stance on payments to independent power producers under the Power Policy of 2002, the analyst said.
JS Global analyst Muhammad Mubashir said that the market witnessed a range-bound activity due to lack of positive triggers amid concerns over the fourth wave of Covid-19.
Investors preferred to book profit across the board. Total traded volume stood at 497 million shares where WorldCall Telecom (-3.3%), Ghani Global Glass (+7%), TPL Corp (+7.5%), Fauji Foods (+5.8%) and TPL Properties (-7.2%) accounted for 32% of the aggregate volume.
On the economic front, workers’ remittances for FY21 showed a robust growth of 27% year-on-year and stood at $29.4 billion.
“Moving forward, we expect range-bound activity to continue in the coming sessions and recommend investors to avail any downside as an opportunity to buy in technology, construction and textile sectors,” he said.
Overall trading volumes rose to 496.8 million shares compared with Monday’s tally of 475 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs16.2 billion.
Shares of 412 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 172 stocks closed higher, 222 declined and 18 remained unchanged.
WorldCall Telecom was the volume leader with 48 million shares, losing Rs0.12 to close at Rs3.52. It was followed by Ghani Global Glass with 37.6 million shares, gaining Rs1.85 to close at Rs28.44 and TPL Corp with 29.4 million shares, gaining Rs1.58 to close at Rs22.72.
Foreign institutional investors were net buyers of Rs124.8 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.