LAHORE - Pakistan Stock Exchange extended losses for the second consecutive session post PM’s approval to increase gas prices by average 46% where last tier consumer category is likely to face around 200% increase in gas prices. Further lack of clarity on economic measures is also shattering investors’ confidence in making fresh entry into the market. Resultantly, index closed losing 0.85% in a single day, taking two days losses to 1.2% (or 488 points).

Taking hit of likely gas price hike, fertilizer, steel, chemicals, and textile sectors remained under pressure, where stocks like GATM, ISL, SPL, and MUGHAL lost average 2-3% in their value.

Commercial banks remained in limelight as market is expecting 50-100bps rise in interest rate in upcoming monetary policy. This led to highest volumetric activity in the sector (50m shares), where specific interest was seen in Bank of Punjab (BOP) with traded volume of 43m shares, gaining 3% to close at Rs11.96.

High trading in small cap stocks improved participation in session where volumes saw uptick of 26%.