KARACHI: karachi stocks raced to higher ground on Tuesday when the market bumped up by 355.50 points, led by heavy trading witnessed in the oil and gas, and cement sectors.
Continued interest by foreign fund managers resulted in across the board improvement in share prices.
The KSE-100 index, the benchmark index of the main Karachi Stock Exchange, gained almost 1.6 per cent in the day’s trading, closing at 22,721 points. The top gainers were Lucky Cement and Engro Corp, racing on the back of positive indicators from the government.
A recent loan agreement between the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the federal government has led to investors being hopeful of the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz administration clearing out the circular debt in Pakistan’s cash strapped power sector.
Market sentiment also rode high owing to recently signed MoU’s between China and Pakistan for heavy investment in the road, rail and power infrastructure, said an analyst at Dalal Securities. As a result, the cement sector posted large gains with Lucky Cement continuing its run and closing with an increase of Rs 10.44, a 4.5 per cent gain.
“The government’s attempt at clearing the circular debt in the power sector led to heavy investment in the oil and power generation sector,” Fahim Raza Equity Sales manager said.
He also claimed that the recent agreement with the IMF raised investor outlook of the market, encouraging bullish trends.
Extending their rally from the previous week, investors pushed up the market, expecting strong earnings of the companies which were due to present their closing reports for the fourth quarter of the fiscal year 2012-13 in the coming weeks.
Engro Corp raised its share value by Rs 7.33, trading a volume of 8,583,800 shares to close at 154.75 up by almost 5 per cent.
A total of 378 shares were up for trade of which the rising 201 stocks were much more than the declining 129 while 48 remained unchanged.
The highest earners were Engro Corp, PSO, and MCB up 4.7 per cent, 1.8 per cent, and 5 per cent respectively.
Index heavy-weights Muslim Commercial Bank Ltd and The National Bank of Pakistan both closed at the upper limit, dealers said.
Fauji Cement’s share value decreased by Rs 0.06, trading 21,537,000 while KESC fell by Rs 0.29 after trading 20,065,000 shares at the end of day. The total traded volume stood at 351m up from 326m on Monday.
Meanwhile, the rupee ended steady in the currency market at 99.98/100.03 against the dollar. Overnight rates in the money market remained flat at 9 per cent.