Pakistan stocks market falls heavily after court order

Last Updated: Wed, Jan 16, 2013 19:11 hrs

KARACHI, Jan 15 (Reuters) - The Pakistani stock market fell by three percent Tuesday after the Supreme Court ordered the arrest of the prime minister over possible corruption charges.

Investors, who were already trading cautiously due to a protest march led by a Sunni cleric in the capital of Islamabad, aggressively sold shares after the announcement that the court had ordered the arrest of Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf.

It is only the fourth time that the Karachi Stock Exchange has fallen by more than 500 points. The last time was in May 2008, when equities fell due to the impact of global financial crises.

Trading volumes remained high due to extreme volatility.

Investors will be closely watching further political developments, said dealer Samar Iqbal at Topline Securities.

The Karachi Stock Exchange's (KSE) benchmark 100-share index ended 3.16 percent, or 525.29 points, lower at 16,107.89.

Fauji Cement fell 4.12 percent to 7.75 per share while Byco Petroleum was down 3.35 percent to 12.70 per share.

D.G. Khan Cement dropped 4.62 percent to 51.00 per share and Engro Corporation fell 4.55 percent to 82.00 per share.

In the currency market, the Pakistani rupee ended weaker at 97.40/97.45 against the dollar, compared to Monday's close of 97.30/97.36.

Overnight rates in the money market remained flat at 9.40 percent. (Compiled by the Karachi newsroom)

More from Sify: