FUND MANAGERS WEIGH IN ON PSX PERFORMANCE, ECONOMIC INDICATORS
Concerns over Pakistan’s economic presentation existed before as well, but the current political pressure has created doubts over the government’s ability and power to be able to handle the situation. However, changing macroeconomic variables need to be understood in context, said Mustafa Pasha, head of investments at Lakson Investments Limited during a panel discussion recently.
On Thursday too, the KSE-100 Index shed 358.78 points or 0.79 percent to end at 45,059.93, a significant retreat from the level seen at the end of May when it ended at a record high of 52,876.46 points. Overall, trading volumes declined to 148 million shares compared with Wednesday’s tally of 165 million. Shares of 351 companies were traded. At the end of the day, value of 208 stocks closed higher, 126 declined while 17 remained equal. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs8.63 billion. TRG Pak was the volume leader with 10.5 million shares, losing Rs1.05 to close at Rs36.87.
US STOCKS TICK LOWER
US stocks ticked lower on Friday as weak earnings from industrial giant General Electric weighed, while tech shares retreated from record highs and energy tracked the price of oil lower.
GE shares fell 2.9 percent to $25.91 and hit their lowest level since October 2015. The company reported a nearly 60 percent slump in profit and said its full year profit and cash flow will be at the low end of its forecasts.
The S&P 500 energy sector fell more than 1 percent as oil prices lost nearly 3 percent, after a consultancy report forecast a rise in OPEC production for July despite the cartel’s pledge to curb output. The S&P 500 technology sector slipped after posting two consecutive record closing highs. The Nasdaq Composite was on track to cap a 10-day streak of gains, its best since February 2015, after closing at a record high on Thursday.
Microsoft shares fell 0.6 to $73.79 despite a strong earnings beat after the bell Thursday, propped in large part by its fast-growing cloud computing business.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 31.71 points, or 0.15 percent, to 21,580.07, the S&P 500 lost 0.91 points, or 0.04 percent, to 2,472.54 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 2.25 points, or 0.04 percent, to 6,387.75.
Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 1.09-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.46-to-1 ratio favored decliners. About 5.73 billion shares changed hands in US exchanges, below the 6.31 billion daily average over the last 20 sessions.
SRI LANKAN SHARES POST OVER 1-MONTH LOW
Sri Lankan shares declined for an eighth session in nine in thin trade on Friday and posted a more than one-month closing low, with blue chips leading the losers.
The Colombo stock index ended 0.22 percent lower at 6,669.51, its lowest close since June 14, and its fifth straight session of falls. The market is bit slowing down and the local interest in the market was short lived. Foreign investors bought shares worth net 6 million rupees ($39,062.50) on Friday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 24.8 billion rupees worth of equities. Turnover was 516.8 million rupees, less than this year’s daily average of around 914 million rupees. Shares of market heavyweight John Keells Holdings closed 1 percent weaker and private lender Hatton National Bank fell 1.5 percent.
EUROPEAN STOCK MARKETS MOSTLY LOWER
Europe’s main stock markets were mostly lower at the start of trading on Friday, as financier attention switched from the European Central Bank’s policy decisions a day earlier to a raft of quarterly corporate earnings reports.
In initial deals in the eurozone, Frankfurt’s DAX 30 slipped 0.2 percent to 12,424.80 points and the CAC 40 in Paris also slipped 0.2 percent to 5,188.92 points compared with the closing levels on Thursday. London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index of major blue-chip companies was fractionally firmer, inching up 0.1 percent to 7,494.66 points.
TOKYO SHARES FALL
Tokyo stocks drifted lower Friday as exporters were hurt by a stronger yen while Wall Street provided a lukewarm lead with concerns over Trump’s economic agenda still lingering.
The benchmark Nikkei 225 index fell 0.22 percent, or 44.84 points, to 20,099.75 — slightly up over the week. The Topix index of all first-section issues lost 0.18 percent, or 3.02 points, at 1,629.99, a 0.28 percent rise since last Friday’s close. In share trading Toyota fell 0.39 percent to 6,126 yen while Nissan slipped 0.35 percent to 1,136 yen. Honda dropped 0.74 percent to 3,076 yen.
Sony shed added 0.11 percent to 4,539 yen but Panasonic lost 0.60 percent to 1,497.5 yen. Market heavyweight Fast Retailing, the parent of clothing giant Uniqlo, retreated 0.75 percent to 33,250 yen.
AUSTRALIA, NZ SHARES DOWN
Australian shares were set for a subdued start on Friday after Wall Street ended flat in its previous session with soft commodity prices expected to further weaken sentiment. China steel rebar and steelmaking raw material futures sank on Thursday as speculative investors booked profits while oil settled lower as concerns over abundant global crude supplies persisted.
The local share price index futures fell 0.19 percent to 5688 points, a 73.5-point discount to the underlying S&P/ASX 200 index close. The benchmark rose 0.5 percent on Thursday. New Zealand’s benchmark S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.08 percent in early trade.
CANADA’S KEY INDEX SLIPS
Canada’s key stock index slipped on Friday as weakness in oil prices weighed on energy shares, offsetting a gain in gold miners.
The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 80.31 points, or 0.53 percent, at 15,184.33 shortly after the open.