KARACHI - Bloodbath activity was witnessed at Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) on Tuesday as aggressive selling was observed in the latter hours of the day, dragging down the benchmark 100-share index by 1,679 points. The index closed at 44,914 points.

The market closing below the 45,000 points mark after 135 trading sessions over a span of nearly seven months, said analyst Adnan Sami Sheikh at Topline Securities. Investors are clearly pricing in the air of political uncertainty associated with the ongoing JIT. Its daily proceedings and developments are subsequently smeared in sensational fashion across all media outlets and could likely ramp up as the 60 day deadline approaches. Albeit the correction has reopened attractive valuations, but for now it seems politics is in the driver’s seat.

Top 10 index point losers were HBL (slip 4.9pc), OGDC (4.8pc), MCB (5pc), ENGRO (4pc), LUCK (3.5pc), PPL (4.6pc), FFC (5pc), DGKC (4.3pc), POL (4.2pc) and UBL (1.9pc), which cumulatively eroded 742 points from the index. Within the 100 index constituents, 88 scripts closed lower, nine were unchanged while only three were positive. On the sector front, Banks shed 418 points, E&P’s 217 points, Cement 214 points, Fertiliser 187 points, OMC’s 108 points and Auto Assemblers 95 points.

Commercial banks led the decline in the market as sector heavy weights HBL (dip 4.9%) and MCB (5.0%) lost value to close on their lower circuit. After gaining a few points on account of investor interest, oil stocks declined as well as international oil prices came to around a seven-month low, stated analyst Arhum Ghous at JS Global.

Based on the textile industry observing 'Black day' on Tuesday as a protest against the said anti-industry policies of the government, NCL (slump 5.0pc) and NML (5.0pc) from the textile sector shed points today, analyst added.

Stocks fell across the board on political uncertainty as the Supreme Court directs JIT to complete Panama case probe. Weak global crude prices, concerns for higher taxation on corporate sector, foreign outflows and dismal economic data on exports and countrywide protest by textile industry on struck up refunds played a catalyst role in record fall at PSX, observed analyst Ahsan Mehanti. Market participants expect the market further decline in the coming days.

Market participation shot up as volumes spiked 73pc to 295m shares, while traded value rose 42pc to Rs13b/$124m. Scrips of total 386 active companies traded in the session of which 343 finished in negative, 25 in positive while 18 remained unchanged.