Lahore -  The market maintained its gloomy look which has been persisting for the past few weeks, with the KSE-100 index ending on 1.7 percent WoW to close at 48,156 levels.

Average volumes also took a hit; down 3.5% WoW, as investors employed a prudent approach ahead of the all-important Panama leaks verdict from the apex court.

International investors also chose to book profits during the week, as FIPI registered $19 million of net selling during the week, against $3.5 million of net buying activity witnessed last week.

Oil & gas Exploration sector ended in the green zone this week on 4.6 percent WoW higher crude oil prices and notice pertaining to acquisition of 20% working interest in Bannu West by MARI (up 14.9 percent WoW).

The cement sector also underwent price deterioration (down 2.6% WoW), due to the news of KP government issuing 14 licences to companies (including GWLC, BWCL) to set up cement factories in the province.

Other major news during the week included Forex reserves dropping to $21.79 billion, Super Tax likely to be extended to FY18 and ECC sanctioning export of 0.2 million tonnes of sugar.

Experts said that in the outgoing week, KSE-100 declined 815pts/1.7% WoW on the back of future roll-over & political uncertainty.

However, the second half of the session saw a swift reversal as completion of roll-over lifted sentiments; which may likely spill over to next week barring any further jitters.

Major drags on the index were HBL (-5.1% WoW), LUCK (-5.1%), ENGRO (-3.8%), BOP (-20.9%) & PSO (-3.3%), with negative contribution of 439 points, while top contributors were MARI (+14.9%), PAKT (+13.9%), EFUG (+6.4%), MTL (+4%) & PMPK (+14.8%), adding 200pts to the gain.

On the sector front, Tobacco (+14% WoW) was the top performer, as demand for big tobacco stocks outpaced limited supply, E&P’s (+2%) were supported by MARI’s outperformance, while Bank’s market capitalization declined 2% as the market took BOP’s right issue announcement negatively.

 During 1QCY16, the KSE-100 returned 0.7 percent (vs. 1 percent SPLY). However market capitalization declined 0.4% (-0.5% SPLY).

Average volume/value surged 154%/132% partially due to low base effect of last year, as volumes were thin due to low oil prices & a global equities sell-of.

PSX stake sale & MSCI EM-upgrade’s bullish sentiments were checked by political & regulatory uncertainty along with a prelude to MSCI flows in the form of foreign funds rebalancing new FTSE scripts between themselves overseas.

During the quarter foreigners & local banks were net sellers of $163.3 million/ $66.9 million, while local mutual funds and insurance companies were the net buyers of $111.1million/ $35.7 million.

Petrol & High Speed Diesel prices have been raised by Rs1/- each, according to Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

According to SBP’s bimonthly survey, consumer confidence index rose 0.95 percent in March, and the respondents expect “relatively high inflation” as compared to the last survey.

Hub Power Company (HUBC) notified the bourse that the Sindh High Court had granted the petition as prayed for the demerger of Hubco’s Narowal Plant into Hubco’s wholly owned subsidiary Narowal Energy Limited. The demerger will be effective from April 1, 2017.

Hascol Petroleum (HASCOL) posted 2016 consolidated earnings of Rs1.21 billion (EPS Rs10.01, +7% YoY). Net revenues of the company surged by 30 percent YoY to Rs99.7 billion while gross margins during the year stood at 5 percent, improving by 103bps YoY.

Profit before taxes, as reported by the company, grew 79 percent YoY, while owing to higher taxation (effective tax rate of 44 percent against 5 percent last year) during the year, net profit of the company posted an increment of 7% YoY.

Service Industries (SRVI) announced 2016 consolidated profit of Rs1.2 billion (+31.6 percent YoY) translating into an EPS of Rs103.45, on sales revenue of Rs19bn (+8.2% YoY).

Growth in earnings stemmed from higher gross margins of 19.88 percent as compared to 17.19 percent last year.

Along with the result, SRVI declared final cash dividend of Rs25 per share.

Supreme Court is expected to announce the much awaited judgment in the Panama papers case by mid-April, a TV channel reported.

A 5-member bench of the SC, hearing the case, had concluded hearing on February 23 and the final judgment had been reserved.

It’s been a year since Panama Papers burst on the scene. The scandal has rocked the governments, exposed high-profile personalities, triggered scores of investigations around the world and dealt a blow to Panama as an offshore financial hub.

Meanwhile, HASCOL reported below expected earnings of Rs304 million (EPS Rs2.5) down 20 percent due to higher taxation expense. PBT of the company was up 56% YoY to Rs593 million.

Tax expense of the company clocked in at Rs593 million in 4Q2016 as compared to no major taxation charge during the same period last year.

HASCOL took advantage of deferred tax asset in previous years that led to lower effective tax rates. In 4Q2016, effective tax rate stood at 44 percent.

Revenues of the company improved by 37% mainly driven by 38% growth in oil sales during the quarter.

Oil sales by HASCOL increased to 500k tons (+38%) as sharp growth in High Speed Diesel (HSD) drove the overall sales. HSD sales were up 31% to 218k tons, Petrol sales were up 37% to 138k whereas Furnace oil sales increased by 50% to 143k tons.

Along with higher sales, gross margins of HASCOL improved to 4.6% in 4Q2016 vs. 3.9% in the corresponding period last year, likely on the back of inventory gains. Consequently, gross profits surged by 61% to Rs1.3bn in 4Q2016.