Pakistani stocks rise on IMF visit optimism


KARACHI: Pakistan’s stocks closed higher on Wednesday, helped by market optimism that a visiting delegation from the International Monetary Fund could lead to a bailout loan and resolve the country’s balance of payment problems, dealers said.

The visit helped reverse losses seen in recent days on the Karachi Stock Exchange’s benchmark 100-share index, said dealer Samar Iqbal at Topline Securities.

The IMF team will be in Pakistan for several days and one official on the team said not to expect any bailout announcement during the trip.

The index closed 0.99 per cent, or 216.10 points, higher at 22,135.72.

Pakistan State Oil Co Ltd and Engro Foods Ltd closed at their upper limit.

Engro Foods Ltd rose 5 per cent at 150.47 rupees, while Bank of Punjab was up 3.97 per cent at 14.68 rupees.

The rupee ended weaker at 98.65/98.70 against the dollar, compared to Tuesday’s close of 98.63/98.69. Overnight rates in the money market fell to 8.50 per cent from Tuesday’s close of 9 per cent.