It seems that the heat of summer has started to show on the energy sector, as the inter-corporate circular debt shows no signs of receding - not anytime soon and probably not in times not-so-soon. The Energy Conference too ended as what an expert called a "futile activity", where all participants acknowledged the problem, with hardly any focus on the solution.
The floods that hit earlier this fiscal year will haunt not only the countrys economic account till June 2011, but also the balance sheets of some relevant sectors. The case of Lucky Cement in the cement sector is a prominent one.
Instead of being the driving force, public sector oil and gas companies have become the Achilles heel of the countrys economy. The mushrooming inter-corporate debt between these and other companies doesn only limit their ability to expand, but it also threatens their economic viability.
The corporate results season has started. Largely in line with market expectations, HBL, Pakistans second-largest lender, has revealed first-quarter profits of Rs4.7 billion, up from Rs3.6 billion a year earlier.
Helped by an improvement in investment income and CASA ratio, the banks net mark-up income jumped by around 23 percent year-on-year.
The average salaried class must be over the moon for having a two-day weekend throughout the summers as holidays are all they crave for. Apart from them, though, the supporters are far and few, as most of the trade bodies have lamented the governments decision to announce two weekly holidays and early market closures.
As the countrys population continues to boom, fast moving consumer goods manufacturers are also expanding, faster than ever. Nestle Pakistan reported a net profit after tax of Rs1.49 billion for the quarter ended March 31, 2011. This tally represents a significant jump of 51 percent in the companys bottom line compared to the same period last year.