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PAKISTAN STOCKS SUFFER FURTHER DECLINE

The stock market suffered a further decline on Friday as investors resorted to profit-booking ahead of weekend and weakening global crude prices brought down shares of oil companies.

At close, the Pakistan Stock Exchange’s (PSX) benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a fall of 180.80 points, or 0.37 percent, to end at 49,300.90. A day earlier, the market had dropped by 346 points. After a brief positive open, stocks traded volatile and entered the red zone as investors likely booked profits ahead of the long weekend amid no major news flow or earnings announcement.

Shares of 386 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 148 stocks closed higher and 223 declined while 15 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs16.1 billion. Aisha Steel Mills was the volume leader with 29 million shares, losing Rs0.71 to close at Rs25.37.

CHINESE SHARES SEE-SAW

Chinese stocks see-sawed Friday as both Hong Kong and Chinese markets turned lower at the midday close after trading higher in the morning.

Brokers said investors took profits after some strong early buying in banking and Chinese companies listed on the Hong Kong exchange, buoyed by stronger earnings figures driven by better-than-expected first-quarter economic growth in the mainland economy.

The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index, which tracks the performance of H shares on the Hong Kong exchange, was down 26 points or 0.3 per cent to close midday at 10.234.95 after gaining 0.2 per cent in earlier trading. The city’s benchmark Hang Seng Index closed midday lower by 0.5 per cent, or 110 points, to 24,588.27.

The Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.3 percent or 10 points to 3,141.55 while the CSI 300 – which tracks the large caps listed in Shanghai and Shenzhen – dropped 0.7 percent or 23 points to 3,423.68.

 

WALL STREET LITTLE CHANGED ON WEAK GDP DATA

US stocks looked set to open little changed on Friday after data showed the economy grew at its weakest pace in three years in the first quarter, while investors remained cautious due to simmering tensions between North Korea and the United States.

Data showed gross domestic product increased at a 0.7 percent annual rate, below the 1.2 percent rise estimated by economists, as consumer spending barely increased and businesses invested less on inventories.

The economy grew at a pace of 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter. Still, the Nasdaq Composite is on track to post gains for the sixth straight month, after closing at a record high on Thursday, following stellar earnings from index heavyweights. The S&P and the Dow were also on track to end the month higher as the first-quarter corporate earnings season continued to impress.

Overall profits of S&P 500 companies are estimated to have risen 12.4 percent in the first quarter, the most since

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 5.66 points, or 0.03 percent, to 20,975.67. The S&P 500 gained 1.91 points, or 0.07 percent, to 2,390.68. The Nasdaq Composite added 23.12 points, or 0.38 percent, to 6,072.06.

SRI LANKAN SHARES END AT 11-MONTH HIGH

Sri Lankan shares closed at a more than 11-month high in heavy trading on Friday as foreign buying for 26 sessions in a row took net inflows into equities to 13.9 billion rupees ($91.39 million) and boosted sentiment.

Foreign investors bought shares worth 708.2 million rupees on a net basis in the session, bringing the year-to-date net equity inflows to 16.4 billion rupees.

The Colombo stock index gained 0.59 percent at 6,610.46, its highest close since May 20. The index added 1.1 percent this week, marking its fifth winning week. The index has climbed 10.6 percent in the 21 sessions through Friday, having risen for 18 sessions in that period. Turnover stood at 1.97 billion rupees, more than double of this year’s daily average of 908 million rupees.

TSX EKES OUT GAIN AS POWER STOCKS GAIN

Canada’s main stock index edged higher in early trade on Friday, as energy stocks broadly gained with higher oil prices and Bombardier Inc shares weighed after Boeing asked the US government to investigate pricing of the company’s new jet.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was up 22.65 points, or 0.15 percent, at 15,529.12 shortly after the open. It is on track for a 0.5 percent fall on the week.

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