KSE sheds 1000 points, Dollar gains Rs1.70 in open market

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Staff Report

KARACHI

Bearish sentiments surrounded the bourse on Monday with the KSE-100 index benchmark dipping by over 1,000 points in intra-day trading ahead of release of the Economic Survey 2018-19 and announcement of federal budget.

According to Ahsan Mehanti of Arif Habib Limited, the market saw panic selling because of pre-budget uncertainty and lack of institutional support on delay in utilising the market support fund approved by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) recently.

At the end of trading, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 937.74 points, or 2.64%, to settle at 34,567.55.

Overall, trading volumes decreased to 91.7 million shares compared with previous Monday’s tally of 124.6 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs3.5 billion.

Shares of 314 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 49 stocks closed higher, 246 declined and 19 remained unchanged.

K-Electric was the volume leader with 18.5 million shares, gaining Rs0.18 to close at Rs4.27. It was followed by The Bank of Punjab XD with 7.3 million shares, losing Rs0.58 to close at Rs10.06 and Unity Foods with 4.3 million shares, losing Rs0.89 to close at Rs9.83.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs662.4 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

The federal government is due to announce the budget for the upcoming financial year 2019-20 today.

Meanwhile, The US dollar on Monday firmed against the Pakistani rupee, gaining Rs1.50 in the interbank market to Rs150.40.

The greenback also gained in the open market by Rs1.70, with one dollar trading for Rs150.50.

Currency dealers held the financial year end, coupled with baseless rumors about a higher future value of the dollar, responsible for the situation.

As a result, they said, demand for the greenback has increased, putting the interbank market under pressure, whereas the open market is just following suit.

On the last trading session, the dollar was trading at Rs148.8 and Rs148.9 in the open and interbank markets respectively.

Meanwhile, gold closed at its all-time high. The yellow metal gained value by Rs700 per 12 grams and traded at Rs72,400.

The capital market also shed 938 points due to political uncertainty and upcoming budgetary measures.