Pakistan shares bore the brunt of heavy selling on Wednesday, as the benchmark KSE-100 Index suffered a massive fall in the final hour of trading, ending over 1.5% lower to finish at its lowest level in over seven months.
The index headed into the final hour of trading 283 points down before carnage began. A mere 60 minutes then saw the KSE-100 lose another 500 points as the index hit an intra-day low of 43,067.61.
At close on Wednesday, the KSE-100 finished with a fall of 661.3 points or 1.51% to settle at 43,221.78. This is the lowest closing for the KSE-100 since March 11 when it settled near the 42,800 level.
Uncertainty over negotiations with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) along with constant pressure on the rupee and heavy import payments have resulted in negative sentiment at the bourse. Since June 14, when the index was hovering around 48,700, the KSE-100 has lost over 11%.
Pressure has recently piled on as the government has reportedly agreed to pass the withheld determined power tariff increase of Rs 1.39 per unit to consumers in phases, Business Recorder reported earlier on Wednesday. This understanding has reportedly been reached between Pakistani authorities, the IMF, World Bank, and Asian Development Bank (ADB).
“Pakistan is likely to pay $1 billion today, due to maturity of dollar Sukuk to global investors. Hope this, and much-awaited notification, may bring some confidence back,” Mohammed Sohail, CEO Topline Securities tweeted.
On Wednesday, sectors putting pressure on the benchmark KSE-100 index included technology and communication (185.62 points), cement (106.51 points) and oil and gas exploration (66.13 points).
Volume on the all-share index decreased from 404.91 million on Tuesday to 354.96 million on Wednesday. The value of the shares trade also dropped, amounting to Rs12.29 billion from Rs15.6 billion on Tuesday.
Hascol Petroleum Limited was the volume leader with 36.76 million shares, followed by WorldCall Telecom with 28.87 million shares, and Telecard Limited with 17.01 million shares.
Shares of 543 companies were traded on Wednesday, of which 86 registered an increase, 436 recorded a fall, while 21 remained unchanged.