Pakistan stocks close negative amid volatile trading

The KSE-100 Index closed its week at 40,016 levels after shedding 55 points or 0.1 percent on Friday.

The KSE-100 index remained volatile despite improved currant account deficit number of USD 809 million for January, the market failed to create excitement among investors, said an equity analyst at Ismail Iqbal Securities.

In Friday’s trading session, the index made a high and low of +11 & -271 points, respectively. Financials remained major laggards as Habib Bank Limited (HBL) losing 1.2 percent closed in the red while United Bank Limited (UBL) losing 5 percent closed day limit down again.

National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) lost 2.3 percent value after reporting its 2018 EPS of Rs9.41 with no cash payout while Bank ALflah Limited (BAFL) also lost 0.6 percent value following the announcement of its 2018 results, reporting a consolidated EPS of Rs6.19 and a dividend of Rs1.5/share.

Banking stocks were the largest losers where UBL alone dragged the index down 77 points. Activity was similar to yesterday with 99 million shares traded compared to 103mn shares traded previous day.

Habib Metropolitan Bank (HMB0 closed in red despite announcing EPS of Rs 5.90 for 2018 against Rs 5.41 in 2017. Oil Gas Development Company (OGDC) gained 0.8 percent value after declaring its firat half FY19 EPS of Rs 13.20 as compared to Rs 8.53 in the same period last year.

UBL (-5%), HBL (-1.2%), ENGRO (-0.9%) NBP (-2.3%), LUCK (-0.5%) and KAPCO (-1.5%) cumulatively contributed -144 points to the close. 99 million shares changed hands, down 4 percent day-on-day (DoD) at a total value of $34 million, down 10 percent DoD.

An equity analyst Danish Ladhani expects market to remain volatile on the geo-political concerns with India.

Published in Daily Times, February 23rd 2019.