KARACHI: Stocks were badly battered on Friday as the KSE-100 index tumbled 506.25 points (1.47 per cent) to close at 33,891.08.

The last session of the week was marred by intense volatility as the benchmark index began on a firm footing to intra-day gains of 233 points.

However, panic gripped the market in the latter session which pulled the index down by 807 points, with some recovery witnessed just before closing.

Volume fell to 231 million shares from 260m shares a day earlier, while trading value dipped to 10-week low at Rs9.6 billion compared with the year’s average of Rs13bn a day. Foreigners did not provide any support as they sold stocks worth net $0.58m.

Analyst at a major brokerage house said that the market sentiments soured as news circulated of regulators’ being active and serving notices demanding explanations from various capital market participants.

The fertiliser sector remained under pressure while positivity initially prevailed as Engro Fertiliser officially announced increase in urea prices by Rs159 per bag.

Over the week, the KSE-100 index lost 556 points (1.62pc) amid uncertainty in regional markets and absence of key triggers. KASB Securities stated that a choppy week came to an end.

Foreign portfolio inflows amounted to $42.2m during the week, compared with net outflow of $12.9m in the previous week.

Brokerage AKD Securities, in a weekly report, stated that the index fell 1.62pc amid continuation of political noise and global oil price volatility weighing on oil and gas sector performance.

Further, gas tariff hike in the range of 10pc-63pc for the industrial sector acted as a major dampener particularly for the fertiliser sector, though some support came through subsequent urea price increase.

Average daily volumes during the week declined by 4pc week-on-week to 289m and traded value fell by 11pc to Rs12.4bn.

Topline Securities stated that low trading activity also affected market sentiments. Major decline was noted in household goods (5pc) and pharma & biotech (4.3pc), while major gainers were media (3.7pc) and beverages (3.1pc).

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