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KSE-100 ends positive as investors await monetary policy

The stock market experienced another volatile session on Friday as investors waited for the upcoming monetary policy which is expected to provide some economic clarity. Amid selling pressure, the benchmark KSE-100 index managed to end the week in the black.

Earlier, trading began on a positive note, but stock sell-off in early hours dragged the index down by over 320 points in the first half because of the economic slowdown in Pakistan projected by Fitch Ratings and the Asian Development Bank.

The bourse staged a recovery in the second half but volatility emerged later, leading to oscillation of the index between red and green zones.

At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded an increase of 146.79 points or 0.36 percent to settle at 40,998.59. Overall, trading volumes decreased to 145.9 million shares compared with Thursday’s tally of 149.4 million. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs6.4 billion. Shares of 372 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 177 stocks closed higher, 178 declined and 17 remained unchanged. The Bank of Punjab was the volume leader with 11.1 million shares, gaining Rs0.44 to close at Rs11.83. It was followed by K-Electric with 9.8 million shares, gaining Rs0.14 to close at Rs5.35 and Unity Foods with 8.5 million shares, losing Rs1.41 to close at Rs31.43.

US stocks flat as facebook slides, intel jumps

Wall Street ended flat on Friday as gains by Intel, real estate companies and utilities offset a drop in Facebook after the social media network disclosed a security breach.

The S&P 500 lost 0.5 percent for the week, but for the third quarter it was up 7.2 percent, its best quarterly performance since the fourth quarter of 2013.

Facebook Inc slumped 2.59 percent for the session after it said it discovered a security issue affecting about 50 million accounts. Its loss weighed more than any other stock on the S&P 500.

Intel jumped 3.08 percent and was the biggest boost on the three major indexes after the chipmaker said it was optimistic it would meet its full-year revenue target.

Smaller rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc tumbled 5.22 percent. The Philadelphia SE Semiconductor index .SOX gained 0.65 percent, also boosted by Nvidia’s 5.09 percent jump on bullish comments from Evercore ISI. The S&P 500 technology index .SPLRCT rose 0.43 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 0.07 percent higher at 26,458.31 points, while the S&P 500 was essentially unchanged at 2,913.98, down 0.02 point. The Nasdaq Composite added 0.05 percent to 8,046.35.

Tesla sank 13.90 percent, its worst day since November 2013, after U.S. regulators sued Chief Executive Elon Musk, accusing him of fraud in a lawsuit that seeks to remove him as CEO, which could make it difficult for the loss-making electric-car maker to raise more capital.

India’s Sensex sees worst month since 2016

The Sensex had the worst month in over two-and-a-half years — down over 6 percent in September with 24 of the 30 stocks ending in the red month-on-month. A number of factors such as rupee depreciation, higher crude oil prices and outflow of foreign funds added to the volatility in the domestic equity markets in September.

While the Sensex lost almost 2,400 points this month since its August closing level at 38,645.07 points, Yes Bank emerged as the worst drag on the Sensex, down 52 percent in September. On Friday, the Sensex trimmed early losses to close 97.03 points or 0.27 percent lower at 36,227.14 points. It was also the first trading day of the October futures and options (F&O) series in the derivatives segments. Yes Bank remained the worst hit among the top 30 Sensex stocks even on Friday, plunging over 18% to a low of Rs 166.15 per share on the BSE. Among other laggards on the BSE Sensex were Maruti Suzuki (-20.53%), Tata Motors DVR (-17.05%) SBI (-14.03%), Tata Motors (-13.69%), IndusInd Bank (-13.47%) and Adani Ports (-13,33%). Tata Steel shares fell the least this month, down 0.12 percent.


Tokyo’s Nikkei index surges to eight-month high

Tokyo’s benchmark Nikkei index jumped more than 1.3 percent to a fresh eight-month high on a weak yen on Friday, as concerns over US trade pressure on Japan retreated.

The Nikkei 225 index rose 1.36 percent or 323.30 points to close at 24,120.04, approaching a 27-year high. The Topix index was up 0.95 percent or 17.14 points at 1,817.25.

Sri Lanka stocks lower

Sri Lanka stocks were lower after the close on Friday, as losses in the Services, Trading and Investment Trust sectors led shares lower. At the close in Colombo, the CSE All-Share declined 0.12 percent.

The best performers of the session on the CSE All-Share were Adam Investments Ltd, which rose 100.00 percent or 0.100 points to trade at 0.200 at the close. Meanwhile, PCH Holdings PLC added 33.33 percent or 0.100 points to end at 0.400 and Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide PLC was up 20.00 percent or 0.100 points to 0.600 in late trade. The worst performers of the session were Samson International PLC, which fell 20.31 percent or 19.40 points to trade at 76.10 at the close. Palm Garden Hotels PLC declined 16.21 percent or 4.10 points to end at 21.20 and Autodrome PLC was down 14.77 percent or 13.00 points to 75.00.

HK shares edge up as trade war fears ease

Hong Kong shares edged higher on Friday as trade war fears eased, but investor sentiment remained cautious over China’s economic health.

The Hang Seng index rose 0.3 percent, to 27,788.52 while the China Enterprises Index gained 0.7 percent to 11,017.87 points. US President Donald Trump’s administration started levying additional tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods on Monday. Beijing retaliated with fresh tariffs on $60 billion of US products, and has unveiled a raft of stimulus measures to support consumption and economic growth. However, economic concerns continued to linger. China’s manufacturing sector likely resumed its slowdown in September after taking a pause in August, with exporters facing growing strains from increasingly hostile trade ties with the United States.

Meanwhile, Hong Kong private home prices fell for the first time in 29 months in August and are expected to soften further as interest rates rise and the Sino-US trade war clouds the outlook for the city’s economy. The sub-index of the Hang Seng tracking energy shares rose 2 percent while the IT sector dipped 0.62 percent and the financial sector was 0.36 percent higher. Property sector fell 1.17 percent.

European stock markets drop

Europe’s main stock markets dropped at the start of trading on Friday, with London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index falling 0.2 percent to 7,528.28 points.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt’s DAX 30 lost 0.4 percent to 12,381.36 points and the Paris CAC 40 slipped 0.5 percent to 5,514.55, compared with Thursday’s closing levels. Meanwhile, the Milan stock exchange fell more than 2 percent in early trading, dropping 2.2 percent to 21,040 points, reflecting investor jitters over the Italian government’s defiant deficit announcement.

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