Stocks lose 58 points in directionless trading


KARACHI: Stocks rema­ined in search of direction on Monday with both institutional and individual investors deciding to stay on the sidelines. The KSE-100 index closed down by 57.53 points (0.17 per cent) at 33,022.87.

Traded volume declined 23pc to 123 million shares and value decreased to Rs6.86bn.

Figures of participation by local and foreign investors were not available till late at night, which officials at National Clearing Company of Pakistan Ltd explained was due to a glitch in the system.

The winning streak was snapped mainly as the crude prices took a breather and pulled back by almost 5pc since Friday’s high on the back of stronger dollar and reversal in shale oil rig count last week.

Analysts at Intermarket Securities commented: “Dollar weakness that might reverse and a production freeze that might turn out to be an empty vessel are not the strongest foundations on which to take long position in oil at $40 a barrel.”

E&P sector consequently witnessed much anticipated profit-taking.

“Baring MARI (up 2.9pc) which announced its decision to increase production, the E&P sector remained under pressure,” said analysts at Global Securities.

Steel stocks were in the green as investors reacted to news of imposition of additional regulatory duty on import of finished iron and steel products in the Economic Coordination Committee meeting held last week.

MUGHAL and ASTL closed at their upper-limit (5pc) and CSAP rose 2.5pc, dealers at Topline Securities pointed out.

The Auto Policy 2016-21 received a cool response from PSMC and INDU which fell 0.8pc and 0.3pc. However, GHNI (5pc), GHNL (5pc), DFML (6.54pc) were big gainers.

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