KARACHI - Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) continued its downward trajectory on Wednesday. The benchmark 100-share index lost another 328 points and closed at 43,792 points.

The stock market opened on a bearish note carrying momentum from Tuesday’s sell-off. Initially, the KSE-100 shed 1,093 points or 2.5%, slipping to an intra-day low of 43,027 points, which subsequently triggered some value hunting.

Select buying in E&Ps, banks, fertilizer & power sectors helped the index regain lost ground, and eventually close down by only 328 points albeit at 2017’s lowest level, said analyst Adnan Sami Sheikh at Topline Securities.

Top index point decliners were LUCK (-3.6%), HUBC (3.3%), ENGRO (2.8%), DGKC (5%) & SNGP (4.7%); withholding 265 points, while OGDC (+4.4%), HBL (+2%), FFC (+5%), PPL (+3.1%) & KAPCO (+3.6%) added 239 points.

On the sector front, cement shed 169 points, OMCs 71 points, & auto assemblers 30 points; while E&Ps added 93 points & banks added 10 points.

The auto sector shed points, on account of the PAMA numbers showing a decline in auto sales of 2% YoY in FY17, and 25% MoM in June-2017. HCAR (-4.81%) and PSMC (-5%) from the aforementioned sector closed in red. OGDC (+3.98%) and PPL (+2.72%) gained points on account of increasing prices of oil in the global market on US government cutting its crude production outlook for next year and fuel inventories plunging, stated analyst at JS Global.

Late session support in oil, banking and textile stocks supported the index to close above session lows after global oil prices retreat, reports of surging banking deposits, upbeat data on textile exports and auto sales data. Concerns over surging trade deficit and external account imbalance played a catalyst role in bearish close at PSX, said analyst Ahsan Mehanti.

Market participation improved with volume rising 16% to 215m shares, while traded value surged 27% to Rs12.6b/$119.8m.

Political noise is expected to continue impacting the market unless matters are completely resolved, brokers said.