LAHORE - Pakistan Stock Exchange Tuesday turned positive after declining in three straight sessions, as the investors are excited about upcoming results where Engro Polymers and Lotchem are likely to post healthy growth in their earnings owing to uptick in their margins (both stocks cumulatively generated trading volumes of 21mn shares). The government is moving ahead to get syndicated financing of $450m and restoration of investors’ sentiments in cement stocks as market talks about rise in cement prices.

Among sectors, cement sector added 51 points to index, followed by chemicals (29 points) and pharmaceutical (23 points). Moreover, market participation in terms of volumes and value went up by 2 percent and 13 percent respectively.

Top five scrips including LUCK (+1.9 percent), BAHL (+2.1 percent), COLG (+5 percent), PAKT (+3.1 percent) & NESTLE (+0.7 percent) added 99 points to the index whereas stocks including HBL (-1 percent), OGDC (-1.5 percent), UBL (-1 percent), FFBL (-5 percent) & NRL (-3.1 percent) withheld 104 points from the index gain.

Attock Cement (ACPL) announced financial results for 3QFY18, where the company reported EPS of Rs5.88, down by 21 percent YoY due to decline in GP margins by 13 points to 30 percent. Finance cost of the company went up to Rs74m, up 17x YoY.

On Wednesday, Synthetic Products (SPEL) announced its financial results for 9MFY18, where net earnings of the company clocked in at Rs239 (EPS Rs2.8), down by 20 percent YoY due to increase in admin/finance expenses by 26/30 percent YoY. Similarly, GP margins went down by 3ppts YoY to 26 percent. In its second notice, the company has informed the exchange about its board’s approval for initiation of diligence process to management to expand business via joint venture or acquisition. Pakistan’s 9MFY18 foreign direct investment (FDI) went up by 4.4 percent YoY to $2.09b, while for the month of Mar 2018, FDI clocked in at $152.4m.