A political turmoil in the country struck the Pakistan Stock Exchange hard on Wednesday where the benchmark KSE-100 index slumped 661 points.
There was confusion over the appointment of a key intelligence agency chief, which dented investor confidence at the bourse. Further depreciation of the rupee to a new low against the US dollar also dampened investor interest.
Apart from that, market speculation over talks with the International Monetary Fund for the resumption of $6 billion loan programme kept investors on the sidelines.
Earlier, the trading session began on a positive note and the KSE-100 index remained largely range bound until noon. After midday, the market began to slide due to political uncertainty and the final hour saw a steep decline.
At close, the benchmark KSE-100 index recorded a decrease of 661.3 points, or 1.51%, to settle at 43,221.78.
JS Global analyst Neelam Naz said that the benchmark KSE-100 index endured another day of heavy selling amid political noise.
Major contribution to the total market volume of 355 million shares came from Hascol Petroleum (-16.2%), WorldCall Telecom (-6.8%), Telecard Limited (-7%), Ghani Global Holdings (-3.9%) and TRG Pakistan (-7.1%).
Engro Fertilisers announced its 3QCY21 results with cash dividend of Rs3.5 per share and earnings per share of Rs3.3.
“Looking forward, investors are advised to stay cautious and build portfolio only on major dips across the board keeping medium-term horizon in view,” the analyst said.
Overall trading volumes decreased to 355 million shares compared with Tuesday’s tally of 404.9 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs12.3 billion.
Shares of 543 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 86 stocks closed higher, 436 declined and 21 remained unchanged.
Hascol Petroleum was the volume leader with 36.8 million shares, losing Re1 to close at Rs5.16. It was followed by WorldCall Telecom with 28.9 million shares, losing Rs0.15 to close at Rs2.06 and Telecard Limited with 17 million shares, losing Rs1.16 to close at Rs15.39.
Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs652.3 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.