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Site update: March 23 2018, at 18:00 PKST
Stock update: March 22 2018.

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Thursday, March 22 2018

Market watch: With euphoria continuing, KSE-100 gains another 336 points
KARACHI: The euphoria from the preceding trading session continued on Wednesday as well as the benchmark stock index surged past 44,800 in intra-day trading and closed the third successive session in the green. The KSE-100 Index shot up from the moment trading began in the morning with buying interest propelling the benchmark index. Trading activity was primarily focused on fertiliser and banking stocks. Possibility of an interest rate hike due to increasing inflationary pressures following sharp depreciation of the rupee led most of the banking stocks to a positive close.
Related news categories: business economic-indicators misc psx stock-exchanges

Offshore assets now easier to hide with amended wealth statement form
ISLAMABAD: In a move that may undermine the drive against tax evasion, amendments in the wealth statement form that the government introduced over a year ago has reduced the disclosure requirements for those taxpayers who own offshore assets. The government has separated the disclosure requirements for assets held inside and outside Pakistan, making the disclosure rather more discretionary in case of offshore assets. The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) made the changes in the Statement of Assets and Liabilities, commonly known as the Wealth Statement, in December 2016 that it reaffirmed in the version it issued six months ago for tax year 2017.
Related news categories: business misc

FDI expected to surge 60% in Pakistan
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan expects net foreign direct investment (FDI) to jump about 60% in 2017-18, the Board of Investment (BOI) chairman said, but some western investors appear to be put off by China’s growing influence in the South Asian nation. Chinese companies are building roads, power stations and a deep-water port in Pakistan after Beijing offered around $60 billion in funding for Pakistan’s infrastructure as part of China’s vast Belt and Road initiative. Chinese investment has helped spur Pakistan’s economic growth to more than 5%, its highest in a decade, while also increasing Beijing’s clout at a time when relations with the United States, a historic ally, are fraying over Pakistan’s alleged handling of militants and the conflict in Afghanistan.
Related news categories: business economic-indicators misc

Volatility: Industrialists express concern over rupee’s freefall
ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) has expressed great concern over the sharp fall in the rupee’s value against the US dollar as it will trigger a new wave of inflation and create more problems for business and industrial activities in the country. “The rupee dropped from Rs110 to a dollar to Rs115 in a single day which should be a cause for great concern for the policymakers,” remarked ICCI President Sheikh Amir Waheed in a statement. He said the rupee had weakened by about 5% in December last year in a similar fashion and another depreciation of over 4.5% in a single day would create new challenges for the economy.
Related news categories: business economic-indicators misc

Gas-based power production surges to over 40% of energy mix
KARACHI: Pakistan succeeded in achieving a record high power production from environment-friendly sources – gas and re-gasified liquefied natural gas (RLNG) – in February 2018 after launching LNG-based projects and enhancing supply of imported gas in the country. The regulatory authority reported on Wednesday that combined electricity production from the locally produced gas and imported LNG increased to 43.17% (3,012.94 gigawatt-hours – GWh) of total production in February 2018.
Related news categories: business economic-indicators misc helpline: +92-42-3631-4186 (10:30am to 5:30pm)