KARACHI - Stocks closed lower amid consolidation in blue stocks across the board post major earnings announcements at KSE.

Due to prevailing situation in the city, local stock market posted lesser activity as volumes remained below 200 million shares. Some profit taking was seen in the oil and gas exploration stocks due to decline in international crude oil prices. LOTPTA remained volume leader amid unconfirmed news that the company may get some relaxation in duty, dealer observed.

The KSE 100-index shed 58.42 points or 0.32 per cent to stop the day at 18126.77 points compared to 18185.19 points of the last working day on Friday.

KSE allshare-index decreased by 40.49 points or 0.32 per cent to close the day at 12705.41 points, KSE 30-share index shed 75.31 points or 0.51 percent to end the at day at 14790.54 points while KMI 30-share index lost 72.63 points or 0.32 percent to conclude the day at 31380.33 points.

Analyst said trade remained thin on strike call by political leaders. Security unrest in the city after Karachi blasts, falling global stocks and commodities, rising political uncertainty and pending OGDC gas sales agreement with fertilizer companies played a catalyst role in bearish sentiments at KSE despite favorable CPI data for Feb’13 and record earning announcements in banking sector.

Market traded 194.299 million shares after opening at 399.159 million shares and the value of traded shares minimized to Rs 4.794 billion from Rs 10.161 billion. Capitalization of stock market settled at Rs 4.492 trillion compared to Rs 4.506 trillion of a day earlier.

Trading took place in 338 companies where losers beat the gainers by 179 to 133 while the value of 26 stocks remained intact. Sanofi-Aventis and Sunrays Textile were the biggest gainers of the day, up by Rs 18.74 to Rs 393.58 and Rs 10.70 to Rs 224.70. Sapphire Textile XD and Pak Gum & Chemical were the biggest losers of the day, down by RS 11.87 to Rs 230.50 and Rs 8.67 to Rs 164.78.

Lotte PakPTA was the volume leader of the day with 30.127 million shares as it closed at Rs 7.69 after opening at Rs 7.24. Fauji Cement was on the second position with 17.241 million shares. It was followed by P.I.A.C (A) with 15.003 million shares, shed Re 0.32 to Rs 6.77, Telecard Limited with 8.738 million shares, off by Re 0.14 to Rs 6.83 and Maple Leaf Cement with 7.459 million shares, decreased by Re 0.58 to Rs 16.92.