ISLAMABAD, May 22, 2014 (Xinhua via COMTEX News Network) —

by Jawad Hussain

Pakistan’s Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE) remained under bearish pressures for third straight session amid lackluster and dull trading activities on Thursday as investors stayed cautious amid confusion over rate of Capital Gains Tax (CGT) in the Federal Budget 2014-15 to be announced on June 3.The benchmark KSE 100-Index slipped further by 0.06 percent or 18.57 points to 28,741.55 points Thursday as compared to 28,760.12 points recorded Wednesday.

The KSE All Share Index inched up marginally by 0.03 percent or 6.98 points to 21,316.66 points, the KSE 30-Index dipped by 0.14 percent or 28.47 points to 19,695.79 points, and the KMI 30-Index fell by 0.19 percent or 85.21 points to 45,646.05 points.

During Thursday’s trading session, the key index touched an intraday high of 28,928.25 points as against an intraday low of 28, 716.64 points.

Market remained range bound once again largely due to a decline in cements stocks, particularly Dera Ghazi Khan Cement and other index heavyweights.

However, the banking sector is expected to outperform on account of heavy participation in long-term government paper in recently held auction of Pakistan Investment Bonds (PIBs) where United Bank Limited, MCB Bank, National Bank of Pakistan, Faysal Bank Limited, and Bank Al-Falah Limited are the top picks.

The finalization of Lafarge Cement’s acquisition deal is also likely to improve market sentiment given increased clarity on sector’s outlook.

Market volumes decreased by 80.317 million shares to 145.666 million shares, capitalization improved by 1.429 billion rupees ( 14.30 million U.S. dollars) to 6.837 trillion rupees, whereas trading value depleted by 770.357 million rupees to 6.021 billion rupees.

Among 355 active scrips Thursday, prices of 186 issues declined, 143 advanced, whereas values of 26 other companies stayed unchanged.

Lafarge Pakistan XD, K-Electric Limited, and Byco Petroleum were the top traded companies with turnovers of 19.73 million shares, 18.6 million shares, and 11.18 million shares, respectively.

Rafhan Maize XD was the top price gainer with increment of 537. 50 rupees to 11,287.50 rupees whereas Bata Pakistan XD led the major price shedders with decrement of 83.48 rupees to 3,618 rupees.


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