KARACHI: Pakistan’s main stock exchange closed higher on Monday, with the benchmark Karachi Stock Exchange 100-share index rising 0.32 per cent or 74.64 points to 23,242.68, supported by banking stocks.
Though a majority of oil, cement and textile stocks fell due to the central bank raising its key discount rate to 9.5 per cent from 9.0 percent on Friday, a strong rally in banking stocks resulted in the index posting decent returns.
Investors sold shares in leverage stocks like cements and textiles and took fresh positions in banking stocks in the hope that the rising interest rate will increase their profitability, dealers said.
The National Bank of Pakistan rose 5 per cent to 52.52 rupees while Maple Leaf Cement Factory Ltd was up 0.97 per cent to 26.02 rupees.
The rupee ended steady at 104.94/104.99 against the dollar, compared to Friday’s close of 104.92/104.99.
Overnight rates in the money market rose to 8.00 per cent from Friday’s close of 7.75 per cent.