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Pakistan becomes 'second best stock market in world'

11:21 PM | 20 Oct, 2023
Pakistan becomes 'second best stock market in world'
Source: File Photo

Pakistan's primary stock index rose to a six-year high on Friday on hopes that the rising rupee will help reduce inflationary pressures.

The KSE-100 Index increased by 0.9% to reach 50,673.04 and increased its month-to-month gain by about 10%, ranking second among the more than 90 global equity indexes monitored by Bloomberg. The gauge is still trading at a price-to-earnings ratio of 3.2 for the next year, compared to 8.8 for the MSCI Frontier Markets. 

According to Faisal Bilwani, head of international sales at Alfalah CLSA Securities Pvt., "The recent recovery in the Pakistani rupee, the secondary debt market hinting at peak rates, and inflation readings will help channel fresh funds back to equities at current very attractive multiples." 

According to Bilwani, the market will probably "remain in limelight" now that the KSE-100 has finally surpassed the 50,000 milestone after six years.

Following an initial agreement with the International Monetary Fund in June for a $3 billion loan programme to help the country avoid a default, stocks in Pakistan have increased by 23%. The rupee, the best-performing currency among those tracked by Bloomberg, has recovered almost 10% from a record low in September.

The nation's economy still has a lot of problems. According to Ankur Shukla, a South Asia economist for Bloomberg Intelligence, "inflation is hovering around 30% and is set to stay elevated this year due to hikes in energy prices demanded by the IMF".

Given Pakistan's limited foreign exchange reserves and the country's still-high inflation rate, the recent spike in global oil prices could put an end to the current stock market rise, according to Ruchir Desai, a portfolio manager at Asia Frontier Capital Ltd. 

Since the Israel-Hamas conflict erupted on October 7, crude prices have increased by 10%. 

For the rally to continue until 2024, he said that national elections, which are anticipated for late January, would be crucial to luring investors to the country. Completion of a new IMF programme is also essential. 

Adnan Khan, head of foreign sales at Intermarket Securities Ltd., stated that "values are still low and a successful IMF review could potentially unlock new highs for Pakistan equities." "We are still optimistic."   

Daily Pakistan Global Web Desk

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PKR exchange rate to US dollar, Euro, Pound, Dirham, and Riyal - 21 Feb 2024

Pakistani currency remains stable against US dollar and other currencies in the open market on February 21, 2024 (Wednesday).

US Dollar rate in Pakistan

In the open market, the US dollar was being quoted at 279.6 for buying and 282.4 for selling.

Euro comes down to 300 for buying and 303 for selling while British Pound rate stands at 350.5 for buying, and 354 for selling.

UAE Dirham AED hovers at 76.15 whereas the Saudi Riyal saw slight increase, with new rates at 74.35.

Today’s currency exchange rates in Pakistan - 21 Feb 2024

Source: Forex Association of Pakistan. (last update 09:00 AM)
Currency Symbol Buying Selling
US Dollar USD 279.6 282.4
Euro EUR 300 303
UK Pound Sterling GBP 350.5 354
U.A.E Dirham AED 76.15 76.9
Saudi Riyal SAR 74.35 75.1
Australian Dollar AUD 181 183
Bahrain Dinar BHD 743.32 751.32
Canadian Dollar CAD 207 209
China Yuan CNY 38.89 39.29
Danish Krone DKK 40.38 40.78
Hong Kong Dollar HKD 35.74 36.09
Indian Rupee INR 3.37 3.48
Japanese Yen JPY 2.10 2.18
Kuwaiti Dinar KWD 902.41 911.41
Malaysian Ringgit MYR 58.6 59.2
New Zealand Dollar NZD 171.68 173.68
Norwegians Krone NOK 26.43 26.73
Omani Riyal OMR 725.96 733.96
Qatari Riyal QAR 76.76 77.46
Singapore Dollar SGD 207 209
Swedish Korona SEK 26.53 26.83
Swiss Franc CHF 316.9 319.4
Thai Bhat THB 7.93 8.08

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