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Stocks continue to fall on profit-taking

KARACHI: Market opened on a positive note on Tuesday as the index rallied to make an intraday high of 180 points but succumbed to selling pressure during the late hour and fell to momentarily dip below the support level of 36,000.

As the bargain hunters entered the market enticed by attractive valuations, the index bounced back. Yet, by the close the benchmark was down 173.13 points (0.48 per cent) to settle at 36,061.55. Most investors decided to remain on the sidelines on pre-budget nervousness.

Volumes during the day increased by 7pc to 220.8 million shares and trading value rose by 13pc to Rs10.3bn. Foreign investors bought stocks worth $0.99m on Tuesday. Major sell-off was seen by mutual funds in the sum of $4.67m.

Dealers at Topline Securities observed that the heavyweight stocks such as MCB Bank, PPL, and FFC declined by 2.5 to 3.3pc to contribute 140 points to index decline. Fauji Cement closed at lower price limit.

“Overall momentum remained jittery courtesy FCCL as the plant accident has left investors in uncertainty about the final outcome and the company is still trying to gauge the impact and no updates are available,” explained analysts at Intermarket Securities. Other regional peers, CHCC, PIOC and KOHC gained on FCCL’s loss. FML, LUCK, EFOODS, UBL and NBP added 113 points cumulatively.

From sector perspective, consumer items, telecommunications and consumer staples fared well while industrial, energy and financials faced the worst of the sell-off.

Analyst Arhum Ghous at JS Global stated that the selling pressure was seen in both the gas utilities.