Pakistan stocks rise, rupee weakens, o/n rates fall
KARACHI: Pakistani stocks rose on Friday, but the market remained dull as investors waited for a monetary policy announcement.
There was trading in banking stocks amid expectations of expected payouts and activity in cement stocks as traders anticipated a cut in interest rates from the state bank of Pakistan, said dealer Nausheen Kiran at Al-Hoqain Securities.
Around 174 companies closed higher while 158 closed lower, said Samar Iqbal at Topline Securities.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s (KSE) benchmark 100-index closed at 16,845.09, up 0.23 per cent or 38.51 points from the previous session. Maple Leaf Cement rose 6.59 per cent, or 0.93 rupee, to 15.05 per share while D.G. Khan Cement was up 0.29 per cent, or 0.16 rupees, to 54.40 per share.
Stocks that fell included Jahangir Siddiqui, down 2.07 per cent to 16.99 per share, and Engro Corp, which dropped 1.2 per cent to 94.00 per share. In the currency market, the Pakistani rupee weakened at 97.56/97.62 against the dollar, compared to Thursday’s 97.34/97.97.
The rupee came under pressure due to import payments. The local currency may fall further due to strong demand for the dollar from importers, a dealer said.
Overnight rates in the money market ended at nine per cent compared to Thursday’s close of 9.90 per cent.