KARACHI - The newly-launched Pakistan Stock Exchange witnessed panic selling on Thursday amid higher trades after major sell-off in global equities and slump in WTI crude prices. The benchmark KSE 100-share index posted a fresh loss of 713.15 points (down 2.22%) and concludes at 31,441.02 points.

Dismal sales data in fertilizer sector for July-Dec'15, weakening economic data on exports, concerns for political instability and gloomy earnings outlook played a catalyst role in major fall in the earnings season, observed analyst Ahsan Mehanti.

Traded volume increased by 65% to 190m shares while traded value increased by 43% to Rs9.7b/$91m.

Falling global markets and unconfirmed reports of few brokers getting letters from agencies hurt market sentiments. As a result, panic like situation was seen yesterday at PSX where index fell 2.27%, stated Muhammad Rizwan, head of sales at Topline Securities.

Rumors of a possible inventory loss kept pressure on HASCOL which led the stock to close at its lower limit.

Above average volume was seen in OGCL where ~9m shares traded. The stock closed at 6-year low on record low crude oil prices, market analyst added.

Out of total 348 traded companies in the session, 290 closed in red, 40 in green while 18 remained unchanged.