The Pakistan Stock Exchange witnessed a lacklustre trading session on Tuesday, where the benchmark KSE-100 index, after oscillating in a narrow range, finally managed to add some points to close the day in the green zone.

Prevailing political and economic uncertainties continued to take a toll on investors’ interests as they profoundly awaited a positive stimulus.

Gloomy macroeconomic indicators amid continuously falling rupee value against the US dollar, which touched a new all-time low at Rs195.74 in the interbank market on Tuesday, again kept market’s sentiments in check.

Following the bearish spell witnessed a day earlier, the session started on a dull note as the benchmark index touched an intra-day low of 42,607 points soon after the commencement.

Moving forward, the index witnessed a roller-coaster ride as it touched an intra-day high of 42,884 points just before the end of the first half.

In the second half, however, the index witnessed oscillations in a narrow range to ultimately settle with modest gains in the green zone.

At close, the benchmark KSE-100 index recorded an increase of 58.74 points, or 0.14%, to settle at 42,726.06 points.

Topline Securities, in its report, said that after the previous day’s sell-off, Pakistan equities had a range-bound day on Tuesday on the backdrop of news reports regarding the Prime Minister’s address to the nation.

Investors opted to stay on the sidelines ahead of the aforesaid address as it is expected that the Prime Minister may announce some tough decisions while taking the nation into the confidence to curtail deterioration on the macroeconomic front, Topline said.

Initially, the market carried forward the previous day’s bearish sentiment and opened on a negative note. However, some buying interest was witnessed later, which supported the benchmark index to gain some ground.

Technology, banks and fertiliser sectors stocks contributed positively to the benchmark index, where TRG Pakistan, United Bank Limited, Habib Bank Limited, Fauji Fertiliser Company and Dawood Hercules Corporation added 75 points cumulatively.

“On the flip side, Lucky Cement, Hub Power Company and Maple Leaf Cement saw some profit-taking as they lost 44 points collectively,” Topline said.

A report of Arif Habib Limited stated that the market witnessed a lacklustre session due to continued economic concerns and political uncertainty.

The KSE-100 index witnessed a range-bound session as investor participation remained dull over the US dollar taking a flight against Pakistani rupee, making a historic high again.

Volumes remained dry throughout the board, on the contrary, hefty volumes were observed in the third-tier stocks.

Sectors contributing to the performance included banks (+31 points), technology (+30.8 points), fertiliser (+17.7 points) and engineering (+13.1 points).

JS Global analyst Mubashir Anis Naviwala said that the bourse witnessed range-bound activity due to noise in domestic politics and concerns over economic outlook, which kept investors from healthy participation.

“The KSE-100 index moved between the range of 277 points.”

WorldCall Telecom (2.1%), Cnergyico PK (1.9%), Lotte Chemical Pakistan Limited (-2.2%), Pakistan Refinery Limited (1.8%) and Treet Corporation (-0.8%) were the volume leaders.

“Going forward, we expect range-bound activity to continue in the coming sessions, where we recommend investors to avail any downside as an opportunity to buy in cement and textile sectors,” the analyst said.

Overall trading volumes decreased to 197.9 million shares compared with Monday’s tally of 250.4 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.2 billion.

Shares of 326 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 171 stocks closed higher, 127 declined and 28 remained unchanged.

WorldCall Telecom was the volume leader with 21.9 million shares, gaining Rs0.03 to close at Rs1.48. It was followed by Cnergyico PK with 15.5 million shares, gaining Rs0.1 to close at Rs5.28 and Lotte Chemical with 11.5 million shares, losing Rs0.6 to close at Rs26.4.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs240.3 million worth of shares during the trading session, according to data compiled by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan.

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