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Its usually the case near the end of a fiscal year that equity fund managers start pulling out all the stops to show up in the category of top performing funds. And now with only three months left in the conclusion of FY14, equity funds have been observed to perk up their performance to rank amongst the top funds.
The IMF released its third tranche ($555.6mn) after the completion of second review. The tone of one pager press release reminds of the infamous mantra of ‘do more’ for the country’s economic managers. There are number of items the Fund has asked the government and the central bank to push upon and the brief document is a kind of synopsis of IMF’s programme. This is despite the so-called exaggerated economic recovery prophesied by Ishaq Dar and company.
Perhaps the biggest cause for a share price to jump is when a suitor is looking to buy a company. Market pundits and analysts alike are busy analysing Pakistan State Oil’s stock performance in the wake of the company’s plans to acquire stake in Pakistan Refinery. But, there is very little focus on what’s going on with the latter; 79 percent increase in PRL’s share price in March 2014 alone needs some explanation.
It is true that loans to private sector business are up. The recently released central bank data shows that in the seven months ending February 2014, businesses took fresh loans of Rs259 billion (on a net basis), which is up nearly 50 percent over the same period of last year. Net borrowings to private sector on the whole—that includes consumer financing—were up 53 percent in the same period.
“CY13 was not an easy year for bankers in Pakistan”-–this is what you probably kept hearing for most of last year. But in all honesty, it was not as bad, once you go through the latest compendium released by the SBP. Yes, the after-tax profits for the banking universe slid by 6 percent year on year, but save for the public sector commercial banks (read: NBP), profits stayed either flat or soared for other categories.
The false news of Templeton exiting Pakistan has jolted the stock market in the last two trading days. But to the relief of punters, its Templeton Global Investment trust not Templeton Asian Growth Fund that is in the process of termination.
2013 was a significant year for the growth and expansion of Islamic banking in Pakistan. From Bank of Punjabs entry into Shariah-compliant banking to Summit Banks announcement to turnaround its business model to a full-fledged Islamic bank, Islamic banking grabbed headlines all throughout 2013.

 



 
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Banking Review 2013


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Annual2012/13
Foreign Debt $60.9bn
Per Cap Income $1,368
GDP Growth 3.6%
Average CPI 7.5%
MonthlyFebruary
Trade Balance $-1.433 bln
Exports $2.167 bln
Imports $3.600 bln
WeeklyApril 14, 2014
Reserves $9.713 bln