KARACHI: Prices of blue-chip stocks fell sharply across the board on Monday, with the benchmark index touching 28,707 points, down 4% from the beginning of the session, during intraday trading.

The Karachi Stock Exchange (KSE)-100 index had lost 1,251 points by 1:44pm mainly on the back of massive selling by local institutions as well as high net worth individuals (HNWIs), analysts said.

“Many HNWIs received margin calls today after two weeks of consistent declines in the benchmark index,” one broker said, while speaking to The Banker Pakistan.

This was in addition to the selling by local mutual funds that had to meet their clients’ requests for redemptions, the broker added.

The KSE-100 index has decreased 12.8% since March 13 when major foreign funds resorted to huge divestments. Net outflows of foreign portfolio investments between March 13 and March 27 have been $46.6 million.

Heavy selling was witnessed in almost all blue-chip stocks, including DG Khan Cement, Engro Corporation, Hascol, Hubco, Maple Leaf Cement, Nishat Chunian and PSO. Their share prices dropped 5% each, resulting in a halt in trading during the session.

Share prices of 320 companies went down but the increase was recorded in only 14 stocks by 2:00pm.

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