During the week ended on 19th February 2021, Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) remained volatile and closed the week at 46,228 points, posting 0.92%WoW gain. This was in continuation of the momentum witnessed a week ago and as a result of staff-level agreement with IMF for the release of US $500 million. Nevertheless, profit taking by investors kept the index under pressure during the week.
Major news flows for the week included 1) commencement of COVID vaccine registration for citizens aged 65 and above, after successful vaccination of around 50,000 frontline workers, 2) home remittances rising to US$2.3 billion in January 2021, up 19%YoY, 3) FATF acknowledging efforts of Pakistan in making substantial progress towards achievement of remaining 6 partially addressed action points, 4) forex inflows via Roshan Digital Account (RDA) reaching US$500 million in just 5 months, 5) tax exemption on profit on RDA deposits, 6) Large-scale manufacturing (LSM) growing at 11.4%MoM in December 2020, highest monthly growth over last decade and 8.6% in 1HFY21 on the back of higher automobile and cement production, 7) OGRA maintained petroleum rates despite rise in international crude oil prices, 8) across the board increment in power tariff by Rs1.95/unit and 9) NAB retracting its reservations on excess profits of IPPs.
Average daily traded volume for the week exceeded 595 million shares, from 734.42 million shares a week ago. Amongst major sectors, Technology led the pack followed by Refinery, Engineering and Automobile Parts & Accessories. Foreigners remained net sellers during the week (net sell US$0.57 million) together with Insurance Companies (net sell US$9.06 million) and Banks (net sell US$1.05 million), which was mainly absorbed by Companies and Individuals. Top performers for the week were: STJT, TRG, GATI, MTL and BYCO whereas laggards included: HBL, ATLH, FABL, AGIL and MEBL.
The market sentiments during the next week will be driven by major offtake in economic activities and developments revolving Covid-19 vaccination. Major corporate result announcements in the upcoming week include HMB, UBL, OGDC, NBP, MLCF, INDU, NML, PPL, and HUBC. With FATF’s meeting scheduled on 22-24 of this month, the market is likely to witness some volatility.