Selling pressure was witnessed at the Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX), as the benchmark KSE-100 index was down nearly 800 points during trading on Monday.
At 2:05pm, the benchmark index was hovering at 63,023.08 level, a decrease of 789.98 points or 1.24%.
Across-the-board selling was witnessed among the index-heavy sectors including cement, chemical, commercial banks, oil and gas exploration companies, OMCs, power generation and refinery.
Index-heavy OGDC and PPL traded in the red amid confusion over the settlement of energy sector circular debt issue.
During the previous week, the bourse managed to close on a positive note as the benchmark KSE-100 index increased by 530.83 points on week-on-week basis and closed at 63,813.06 points.
Experts said that uncertainty over the settlement of the circular debt is driving the bearish trend. Moreover, the market also awaits the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decision regarding the policy rate today.
The meeting of the MPC of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) will be held today (Monday) to decide about the policy rate.
In the previous meeting held on Dec 12, 2023, the Committee maintained the policy rate at 22% as the committee believed that a hike in gas prices may have implications for the inflation outlook.
The policy rate has remained unchanged since June 2023, when, the MPC convened an emergency meeting and decided to raise the policy rate by 100 bps to 22% to keep the real interest rate firmly in the positive territory on a forward-looking basis.
“We remain positive on Pakistan equities, with room for significant gains if elections and a new International Monetary Fund (IMF) program are navigated smoothly,” said Intermarket Securities Limited in a note on Monday.
This is an intra-day update