Karachi stocks close in the red with a loss of 112 points

KARACHI: The Karachi stock market faced a bearish trend Thursday as prevailing tension between Pakistan and the United States, and delay in launching of the Margin Trading System (MTS) propelled investors to cut their exposures.The Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) 100-share index shed 111.81 points or 0.91 percent to close at 12,187.47 points as compared to 12,299.28 points of the previous trading session. The KSE 30-share index lost 148.46 points to close at 11,781.93 points as compared with 11,930.39 points.Analysts said institutional profit-taking continued despite record corporate earning announcements in oil and bank sectors while foreign interest remained limited. “KSE observed another lacklustre day as investors preferred adopted a cautious approach due to the ongoing tension between US and Pakistan,” said Topline Sec analyst Samar Iqbal. “Also delay in launching of MTS weakened the sentiments.”However, continued euphoria in closed-end mutual funds kept it in the limelight and around 25 percent of the total volume was traded in the closed-end funds, he said and added that some interest was seen in Lotte Pakistan PTA on the back of improved PTA margins.The market turnover surged by 24.28 percent and traded 89.82 million shares as against 72.27 million shares of the previous session. The market capitalisation fell 0.84 percent to Rs 3.300 trillion from its opening at Rs 3.328 trillion. Losers beat gainers 237 to 142, while 17 stocks were unchanged.“Bearish activity continued on investors’ fear over foreign funds sell-off in emerging markets over Egypt unrest,” said Arif Habib Investment Ltd Director Ahsan Mehanti. “Institutional profit-taking continued despite record corporate earning announcements in oil and bank sectors while limited foreign interest, concerns over Pakistan and US bilateral relations on release of Raymond Davis affected the market sentiment as investors awaited key decision on MTS approval.”

The KMI 30 shed 212.07 points to close at 19,686.51 points as compared with 19,898.58 points of the previous session. The KSE all-share index closed with a loss of 72.64 points to close at 8,459.44 points as against 8,532.08 points.“Matured levels of various blue chips continued to struggle to sustain their levels, mainly due to post results sell-off and absence of buyers on intervals,” said Aziz Fida Husein and Co analyst Husnein Asghar Ali. “Stocks offering consistent dividend yields and the companies reporting growth despite economic downturn continued to invite renewed buying interest.”Lotte Pakistan PTA was the volume leader with 7.76 million shares as it closed at Rs 16.18 after opening at Rs 16.25, shedding seven piasas. Sui Southern Gas Company traded 5.96 million shares as it closed at Rs 26.47 from its opening at Rs 26.20, gaining 27 paisas – Dailytimes