Uncertainties regarding the country’s liquidity position and ongoing political uncertainties kept the market range bound during the week ended on November 18, 2022, with the benchmark index settling down by 362 or 0.84%WoW at 42,730 points.
Participation in the market was substantially low this week, with daily traded volumes averaging 186.3 million shares during the week as compared to 251.1 million shares in the prior week, depicting a drop of 25.8%WoW. Moreover, the PKR lost footing against the US$ in the week, depreciated 0.68% over the period.
Other major news flows during the week were: 1) Talks between IMF and Pakistan rescheduled, 2) visit of Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince to Pakistan postponed, 3) Remittances recorded at USD2.2 billion for the month of October 2022, 4) World Bank agreed to provide US$1.3 billion to Pakistan for emergency, agriculture and housing relief, 5) GoP raised PKR757 billion from T-Bills auction, 6) LSM posted a 0.4%YoY decline in first quarter of current financial year, 7) July-October textiles and clothing exports down 1.34%YoY, and 8) Circular Debt Management Plan turned down by the Finance Ministry.
Top performing sectors were: Leasing, Chemicals, and Fertilizers, while the least favorite sectors were: Miscellaneous, Vanaspati & Allied Industries and Sugar & Allied Industries. Stock-wise, top performers were: LOTCHEM, FCEP, ENGRO, GHGL and TRG, while laggards included: UNITY, PSEL, KTML, GATM and ILP.
The market is expected to remain range-bound in the near future, clouded by concerns regarding the liquidity position of the country (International Sukuk maturing on December 5, 2022) and the outcome of the IMF discussions. Furthermore, the capital markets would be taking further cues from the Monetary Policy announcement, scheduled for November 25, 2022.
Any news regarding foreign inflows will be well-received by the market, easing off sovereign liquidity concerns. Moreover, the economic slowdown in the country-an intended outcome
of the SBP’s contractionary policies-and post-flood slowdown in economic activity is likely to keep corporate earnings subdued going forward. Investors are advised to stay cautious while building new positions in the market.