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Money and Banking: Pakistan


The rupee fell against the dollar, it, however, posted fresh gain versus the euro as the single European currency set a fresh 11-year low versus the greenback in the global market. In the interbank market, the rupee dropped by 19 paisa in terms of the dollar for buying and selling at Rs 101.00 and Rs 101.05 respectively.

The government is working on more attractive incentives to promote housing finance schemes in Pakistan including a proposed income tax exemption/tax incentive on income earned from such projects, income tax relaxation for long term finance and reduction in capital value tax (CVT), stamp duty and registration fee to make houses sale/ purchase transactions more affordable, especially in case of low value properties.
Business community of the Punjab has welcomed 100 basis points cut in the policy interest rate by the State Bank of Pakistan with reservations describing it below expectations. Talking to Business Recorder, here on Sunday Chairman All Pakistan Business Forum (APBF) Nabeel Hashmi said as the government has saved nearly $ 5 billion on the import of oil, it should have reduced the interest rate by at least 200 basic points.
The Businessmen of South Punjab have welcomed the announcement of one percent reduction in the policy rate, saying it would definitely cut the cost of doing-business. They also expressed reservation and said it would still not compensate higher power and energy and transportation costs that are being industry faced. President of Multan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) Mian Iqbal Hassan said the industry would benefit from one percent decline in the mark-up, if the government ensures 24 hours power supply at reasonable rates.
Futures spreads grew by 122 basis points to reach 12.72 per cent at the end of last week. During the week under review, the average trading turnover grew by 5.6 percent to 28.15 million shares from the previous 26.66 million shares. The value of the shares traded averaged on Rs 3.244 billion, marking a rise of 25 percent as compared to Rs 2.596 billion.
The rupee depicted no change in relation to the dollar on the local market on Saturday in the process of trading, dealers said. The rupee held the overnight levels against the dollar for buying and selling at Rs 101.60 and Rs 101.80 respectively. It shed 20-paisa in terms of the euro for buying and selling at Rs 114.20 and Rs 114.45, they said.
The rate cut has brought a sigh of relief for an otherwise disgruntled business community. The decision is better than the expectations as most of the analysts and economists were anticipating 50bps cut which was supposedly in line with IMF''''''''s directive. BR Research was also in favour of a 50bps cut. Inflation is down and is expected to remain low in the second half as well - SBP''''''''s projection of full year inflation was revised down to 4.5- 5.5 percent (annual target: 8%) while BR Research''''''''s estimates are even less than that.


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ICT 2014

Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
Trade Balance $-1.664 bln
Exports $1.966 bln
Imports $3.630 bln
WeeklyJanuary 22, 2015
Reserves $10.331 bln