KARACHI: The stock market closed flat on Monday with the KSE-100 index marginally down by 6.43 points at 33,724.

After trading in a range of 394 points during the day (291 up, 103 down), the index went into a tailspin in the last half hour as the news of the election tribunal ordering re-election in NA-125 constituency swept the market.

Nervous investors started to take profit. Foreign investors’ bought stocks worth $0.56 million. Among local participants, individuals sold stocks of net $4.22m; companies and banks also decided to book profit with sale of $5.89m and $2.68m, while mutual funds were the only major buyers worth $5.60m.

Volume was up to 206m shares of Rs14.9 billion value, from 190m shares of Rs13.1bn on last Thursday.

Cement was the top traded sector with 34.4m shares changing hands, followed by fertilisers 33.4m shares and the banking sector with 27.5m shares.

“Investors also trimmed their positions after slightly higher-than-expected April 2015 CPI announcement,” said a major brokerage in its daily report.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Corp commented that pre-budget uncertainty played a catalyst role in bearish activity ignoring favourable consumer price index (CPI) inflation data for April 2015.Pakistan Oilfields (POL) was up 1.6 per cent, as it announced a discovery in Tal Block. It announced that the 3rd and 4th Drill Stem Test (DST) at Mardankhel-1 well produced 1,910 barrels per day of crude and 23.22 million cubic feet per day gas.

Analyst at JS Global observed that the bulls dominated the market for most of the day, but the market took a nosedive in the last half hour where the index lost almost 300 points.

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