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Markets

Positivity continues at PSX, KSE-100 gains nearly 1.5%

  • Sentiment improves after IMF said it looks forward to working with new government
Published February 23, 2024

Bullish momentum was witnessed at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said it remains keen to work with the new government, pushing the benchmark KSE-100 Index to gain over 900 points during trading on Friday.

At close, the benchmark index settled at 62,815.82, up by 901.48 points or 1.46%.

Index-heavy sectors including OGDC, PPL and SNGPL were in the green.

The improvement in sentiment comes after the IMF said it looks forward “to working with the new government” of Pakistan.

In a press briefing on Friday, Julie Kozack stated: “During the period of the caretaker government, the authorities have maintained economic stability.

“This has been done through strict adherence to fiscal targets while also protecting the social safety net. It has been done by maintaining a tight monetary policy stance to control inflation and to continue to build up foreign exchange reserves.”

In a key development, Bloomberg News, citing a Pakistani official, reported on Thursday that Pakistan plans to seek a new loan of at least $6 billion from the International Monetary Fund to help the incoming government repay billions in debt due this year.

The country will seek to negotiate an Extended Fund Facility with the IMF, the report said, adding that the talks with the global lender were expected to start in March or April.

On Thursday, PSX witnessed a range-bound session, as investors looked for more clarity on both the political and economic fronts, to settle at 61,914.34 level.

Globally, Asian shares climbed Friday following a day of record highs in Japanese, US and European markets after demand for AI-powering chips drove tech gains.

Investors celebrated on Thursday as bumper profits reported by US chip giant Nvidia, seen as a bellwether for the artificial intelligence boom, helped boost Tokyo’s benchmark index past a record high set in 1989.

On the political front, the first session of the Punjab Assembly began on Friday in which the newly-elected lawmakers were administered oath. Moreover, Sindh Assembly’s session is scheduled for tomorrow, where leading party Pakistan People’s Party has nominated Murad Ali Shah again for the Sindh’s CM post.

Meanwhile, the Pakistani rupee marginally reduced against the US dollar, depreciating 0.01% in the inter-bank market on Friday. At close, the local unit settled at 279.36, a loss of Re0.03 against the greenback, as per the State Bank of Pakistan.

Volume on the all-share index decreased to 377.97 million from 324.83 million a session ago.

The value of shares increased to Rs16.01 billion from Rs13.96 billion in the previous session.

Kohinoor Spining was the volume leader with 36.16 million shares, followed by K-Electric Ltd with 26.53 million shares, and Yousuf Weaving with 16.72 million shares.

Shares of 339 companies were traded on Friday, of which 201 registered an increase, 118 recorded a fall, while 20 remained unchanged.

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