Pakistani families are sticking together. The latest Household Integrated Economic Survey (HIES) recorded average household size at 6.35 members in 2013-14, a decline of nearly one percent compared to 6.41 members recorded in the 2011-12 HIES. Urban household size declined by two percent to 6.09 members in this period, whereas rural households averaged 6.49 members, a fall of 30 basis points.
South Africa, the largest market for Pakistan’s sea exports of cement, has imposed dumping duty ranging from 14.29 percent to 77.15 percent on import of cement from Pakistan to that country. Although the move is bound to make some cement exporters wince, the sector’s performance should maintain course if domestic demand perseveres.
According to a recent UNESCAP report Pakistan’s economy is expected to grow 5.1 percent in 2015. While that projection seems optimistic, the report also points out that macroeconomic fault lines would continue to create hurdles in the country’s economic growth.
Pakistan’s Wholesale Price Index (WPI) has been falling sharply of late. According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), the WPI has seen a negative year-on-year growth for each consecutive month since December 2014. That’s a never before in Pakistan’s history (well at least since July 2002), and has left some observers worrying about a growing deflationary environment.
Be it Shariah compliant or not, the rate of return matters! Yet, investors are seen willing to compromise on the returns on the Islamic side but this applies more to the instruments carrying sovereign ratings such as Ijara Sukuks. That said the upcoming KE Sukuk so far seems to be getting a mixed response from the investors’ community with the premium on offer being the primary consideration.
Huawei, a leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, recently launched its 2015 Global Connectivity Index (GCI) for countries showing which countries are poised for development, growth, and planning in the ICT sector by benchmarking fifty economies in terms of connectivity, ICT usage, and digital transformation. Drawing from the rise of digital economy, the recent edition of the index is a more comprehensive as far as connectivity is concerned, which not only includes the computing and networking, but also focuses on other elements of the digital economy like e-commerce and demand.
Domestic auto assemblers have little to complain about this year as just about all exogenous factors have played out in the sector’s favour in recent months. Even the companies that have not clocked in super sized sales growth have managed to post stellar returns for their shareholders. The financial year for Honda Atlas Cars (KSE: HCAR) has drawn to a close and even though the company’s car sales were stoic, it was able to churn out stellar profitability growth.