Monitoring Desk: Pakistan has plowed an independent trajectory this year, outperforming both its fellow frontier markets and members of the emerging-market grouping that it is slated to join in 2017, reports Bloomberg today.
According to the most credible financial newspaper of the world, benchmark KSE100 Index has rallied 27 percent year-to-date to become Asia’s best-performing equity market in 2016, according to a basket of 26 peers tracked by Bloomberg.
The market received a boost in June when MSCI Inc. announced that it would reclassify Pakistan as part of its benchmark emerging-market index from May 2017 — a show of confidence that it declined to extend to China.
It was a long time coming for South Asia’s second-largest economy. The Pakistan Stock Exchange, previously known as the Karachi Stock Exchange, was downgraded to frontier-market status in 2009 after it introduced curbs against sell orders to stem an investor exodus in late 2008.
After registering gains over seven of the eight years since, investors are betting it still has further to climb.
The KSE100 Index reached its all-time peak of 41,464.31 last Friday, and by 2:23 p.m. in Karachi was heading toward a new record. Last month Pakistan completed a three-year $6.6 billion International Monetary Fund loan program. Thanks to the aid, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was able to avert a balance-of-payments crisis and boost foreign-exchange reserves to a new high.