The Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX) encountered a significant dip in an environment tainted by growing apprehensions regarding Pakistan’s economic state.
The benchmark index saw a sharp decline of over 1.7%, reinforcing the bearish sentiment that has dominated the market lately.
The ascent in the rupee-dollar equation did not sit well with investors, triggering a flurry of share sell-offs amid concerns of an imminent economic downturn. Such reactions from the investment community plunged the KSE-100 index substantially right from the day’s onset, causing a loss of more than 800 points and pushing the index below the 46,000 threshold.
By midday, the PSX had descended to 45,421.01, marking a 1.78% decrease from the previous close of 46,244.55 points. The prevailing sentiment among investors leans towards caution, primarily owing to uncertainties surrounding the weakening economy.
The KSE-100 index maintained its bearish trend, dropping by 1784 points to 44,459 by 3 p.m., down from yesterday’s close of 46,244.55.
External Factors Weighing on the Index
Driving the market’s reservations is the sliding value of the rupee. This downward spiral is particularly concerning for stakeholders as the upcoming review by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is still a few months away. Moreover, investors navigate choppy waters with scant details about potential investments from the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). There’s a consensus that value-driven investors might find opportunities amidst this downturn, given the index’s 8% dip from recent peaks. However, a tangible shift in valuation would necessitate clear insights into the political landscape and economic trajectory.
Further darkening the horizon is the spectre of inflation, a consequence of the continued decline of the rupee. With the Monetary Policy Committee’s (MPC) meeting slated for September, there’s speculation about the central bank resorting to interest rate hikes. Compounding these economic pressures are looming public protests against escalating power tariffs. If the interim administration adopts populist strategies to appease public sentiment, future dialogues with the IMF could be put at risk.