KARACHI: Pakistan equities closed lower on Tuesday, snapping a five-day positive run that added nearly 4% to the benchmark KSE-100 index.

The broader market took a breather primarily on profit-taking, while losses in the region also kept investors on a lookout.

At close on Tuesday, the benchmark 100-share index recorded a fall of 0.44% or 152.07 points to end at 34,031.78.

Elixir Securities, in its report, said the index heavy Exploration and Production (E&Ps) took the beating as crude tumbled 5.1% on Monday, after OPEC’s report of pumping the most oil in three years in the month of September.

“Financials, on the other hand, remained in the limelight on reported institutional interest and earnings related excitement with MCB Bank (MCB PA +1.74%) and Habib Bank (HBL PA +0.90%) contributing most points to the index.

“With earnings seasons commencing shortly, we see volatile trading with benchmark index testing 34,500 in the near term.

Meanwhile, JS Global analyst Ahmad Saeed Khan said the index throughout the day juggled between +96 points and -174 points to finally close the index 0.44% down.

“News of Lucky Cement expanding in the North gives rise to speculation that other major players will do the same, which can eventually lead to the big players getting into a price war to capture market share,” said Khan. “Biggest laggards of the sector were Cherat Cement Company (CHCC -1.13%) and Lucky Cement (LUCK -1.03%).”

Trade volumes rose to 239 million shares compared with Monday’s tally of 195 million.

Shares of 394 companies were traded on Tuesday. At the end of the day, 144 stocks closed higher, 223 declined while 27 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs10.8 billion.

Pace Pakistan Limited was the volume leader with 40.4 million shares, gaining Rs0.83 to finish at Rs7.54. It was followed by Pak Elektron XD with 21.4 million shares, losing Rs1.12 to close at Rs81.24 and TRG Pakistan Limited with 18.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.08 to close at Rs36.79.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers of Rs63 million during the trade session, according to data maintained by the National Clearing Company of Pakistan Limited.

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