Political insecurity, predicted interest rate hike drags PSX 546 points down

Shares at Pakistan Stock Exchange again tumbled Monday as political and economic uncertainty continue keeping the investors at unease after the PTI-led coalition decided to dissolve the Punjab Assembly with the prospects of asking Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif for a vote of confidence.

By the time trading was closed, the benchmark KSE-100 index stood at 39,720.75 against the previous closing of 40,323.45, representing a decline of 602.70 points or 1.49 percent.

The latest bloodbath was a continuation of what we had witnessed during the last session on Friday when the benchmark index had dropped by 480.44 points.

It means the KSE-100 Index is down 2.58 percent or 699.70 points in the current calendar year after closing at 40,420.45 on Dec 30 – the last business day of 2022.

The country is witnessing continued political upheaval after the dissolution of the Punjab Assembly with a similar move expected in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa where the PTI is in government since 2013.

According to Ali Nadeem, Head of Sales at First National Equity Limited (NFEL), the political chaos is not just limited to Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa as the trust in the state-owned entities has also vanished after the possibility of Shehbaz being forced to take vote of confidence from the National Assembly.

Meanwhile, the continuous threat of further hike in the interest rate is also being listed as one of the reasons by several experts.

On Monday, the total volume of the KSE-100 Index was recorded at 52.07 million shares after the trading of 90 entities’ stocks. During the process, the share prices of 78 was down, eight gained while four remained unchanged,

There was a decrease in the market capitalisation as well which touched Rs6.33 trillion (Rs6,333,691,588,266) against the previous level of Rs6.42 trillion (Rs6,424,208,930,150) after Monday’s trading of value Rs3.20 billion (Rs3,203,261,693)

As far the volume leaders are concerned, Lotte Chemical topped the list with 7.66 million shares followed by Pakistan Petroleum 6.86 million, Oil and Gas Development Company 4.07 million, CNERGY 3.86 million and Sui Northern 3.29 million.

When comes of those witnessing a decline in their share prices, the worst five performers on the benchmark index were: Shakarganj Limited 7.50 percent, Sui Northern 7.18 percent, TRG 5.56 percent, Nestle 4.44 percent, and Attock Refinery 4.09 percent.

However, the share price of Lotte Chemical was up by 1.74 percent, Attock Refinery by 1.13 percent, Habib Metropolitan Bank by 0.75 percent, Nishat Mills by 0.38 percent, and Doleman City by 0.36 percent.

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