KARACHI: Stocks remained volatile on Thursday with the KSE-100 index searching for direction as it dipped into the red several times only to re-emerge. As investors decided to consolidate current positions and wait for the SBP monetary policy, the index shed 50.34 points (0.15 per cent) to close at 33,896.03.

The level of 34,000 proved strong resistance.

Brokerage Intermarket Securities said that the yen appreciated against the dollar, weighing down heavily on the sentiment in autos. Japan’s benchmark index on the contrary snapped a seven-day losing streak.

Banking, autos and multi-utilities gave in to the selling pressure while investors with trading positions in refineries, E&P, OMCs, fertilisers and cements also decided to restore some profit-taking.

“Investors trimmed their position in cement, oil exploration and banking stocks, while interest was seen in small-cap stocks which provided much of the volume,” affirmed dealers at Topline Securities.

Analyst Ahsan Mehanti at Arif Habib Corp said that the stocks closed bearish on concerns for ongoing foreign outflow and pressure in global equities.

Analysts at JS Global commented that the initial rally was led by the oil sector as global crude traded above $40 a barrel.

However, the market succumbed to selling pressure during the second-half as global crude prices depicted downward movement. Top performers were PRL (2.12pc) and BYCO (2.35pc).

“To wrap it up, we reiterate that the index is likely to undergo consolidation at 34,000 level with market participation coming down and retail investors again developing an appetite for the usual second- and third-tier stocks,” concluded an analyst.

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