KARACHI -  Pakistan Stock Exchange staged strong recovery on Thursday as investors disregarded the rising political noise. The 100-share index touched new highs of 41545.35 points after rallying by 622 points, (up 1.5%).

The rally in the local bourse was led by the oil sector that rallied as global crude oil prices held near a 15-month high after government data showed that US stockpiles declined unexpectedly, trimming an overhang of inventories. OGDC (up 2.26%) and PPL (4.56%) were the biggest index movers of the sector yesterday. Similarly, rally in the banking sector was witnessed on the back of better-than-expected 9-month results. Both BAHL and HBL announced their 9M2016 results, with EPS clocking in at Rs4.88/share and Rs17.47/share respectively. “Rally was witnessed in the auto sector where ATLH (up 2.62%) and INDU (5.00%) were the biggest index movers of the sector,” stated analyst Ahmed Saeed Khan.

Overall, volumes increased by 10.8 percent to 561 million shares, while value rose by 50 percent to Rs18.6 billion/$178 million. BOP led the volumes with 68m shares traded; stock gained 3.9%.

“NEPRA approval on raise in power tariff supporting ailing SOEs, surge in global crude prices near to $51/barrel and strong results in the banking and oil sectors played a catalyst role in record close, ignoring ongoing foreign outflows at PSX,” observed analyst Ahsan Mehanti.

HBL announced EPS of 6.6/share along with Rs3.5 dividend. This led the stock price to gain 2.1%. BAHL announced better-than-expected EPS of 1.48/share. Stock price gained 2.1%, said dealers at Topline brokerage.