Bulls and bears continued to race for dominance at Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), as benchmark KSE-100 fell flat and gained merely 59 points by the closing bell to clock at 44,491.03 On Tuesday, the market witnessed a directionless trade following a blood bath in the previous session. Pessimism over the economic situation and renewed lockdown restrictions continued selling pressure at the bourse. Investors largely stayed muted during the session over the government’s decision to remove Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh from the post of finance minister and replace him with Minister for Industries and Production Hammad Azhar. But, the market also expressed displeasure as owing to the pending conclusion of a National Accountability Bureau (NAB) inquiry, the government missed the deadline for payment of the first installment of about Rs.85 billion to about 19 independent power producers (IPPs) required under an agreement signed on Feb 28. Practically this is default on part of the government because it has not paid committed funds in time,” said a representative of an IPP, adding the IPPs set up under 1994 power policy and Hubco contracted before 1994 policy would be entitled to send notices of default to the government on Tuesday. However, investors saw some positivity in the recent strength in PKR-USD parity, as greenback traded below Rs.154 in the interbank indicates lower import bill in the near term. During the session, the benchmark KSE-100 Index registered its intraday low at 44,199.26 level after it lost 232.54 points. But, paring its earlier losses and reversing the trajectory, the index touched its intra-day high at 44,808.63 after it gained 376.83 points. The volume at KSE-100 receded from 316.17 million shares recorded in the previous session to 175.4 million shares, while the all-share volume also decreased from 523.877 million shares recorded in the previous session to 339.1 million shares. Market Capital increased by Rs.20.21 billion, but total value traded decreased by 2.75 billion to Rs.20.76 billion. The volume chart was led by Byco Petroleum Pakistan Limited followed by TRG Pakistan Limited and Unity Foods Limited. The scrips exchanged 46.12 million, 35.79 million and 30.81 million shares, respectively. According to the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited (NCCPL) foreign investors were net buyers of $0.17 million worth of equities. Among local investors, Individuals and Insurance Companies led the buying chart, and mopped up $2.4 million and $2.37 million worth of equities. However, Mutual Funds led the selling chart and offloaded $6 million worth of equities. During the session, sectors which dented the index were Oil & Gas Exploration Companies with 38 points, Power Generation & Distribution with 37 points, Tobacco with 18 points, Textile Composite with 9 points and Technology & Communication with 9 points. Among the scrips, the most points taken off the index was by ENGRO which stripped the index of 39 points followed by Hub Power Company with 32 points, Mari Petroleum Company with 28 points, Pakistan Tobacco Company Limited with 16 points and United Bank Limited with 16 points. However, sectors which lifted the index were Commercial Banks with 58 points, Automobile Assembler with 32 points, Cement with 20 points, Chemical with 14 points and Food & Personal Care Products with 12 points. Among the scrips, the most points added to the index was by Muslim Commercial Bank which contributed 57 points followed by Fauji Fertilizer Company Limited with 21 points, Indus motors with 11 points, Fauji Fertilizer Bin Qasim Limited with 11 points and Pak Elektron Ltd. (PAEL) with 10 points.