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Stocks slip as infections overshadow vaccine hopes

November 30, 2020: Global equity markets fell back Monday as hopes that vaccines will soon be rolled out were overshadowed by concerns over fears of a coming surge in US cases.

Oil prices remained under pressure going into a two-day meeting of major producers, traders concerned at the lack of an agreement on an extension of the output cuts that have provided support for most of the year.

World markets have surged this month thanks to breakthroughs on vaccines, while investors have also been cheered by Joe Biden's US presidential election win and signs that incumbent Donald Trump will allow a smooth transfer, despite claims of voter fraud.

But Wall Street lost steam after recent record highs as the Dow gave up some 1.2 percent two hours into trading with London and Paris seeing similar losses at the European close.

Frankfurt's DAX, having enjoyed a 15 percent rise on vaccine optimism across the month, limited its fall to 0.3 percent.

With at least three vaccines in the pipeline and approval in some countries said to be just weeks away, there is optimism on trading floors as dealers forecast an economic rebound next year.

"Vaccines offer the promise that the major disruptions of the pandemic will fade from the scene in 2021," said Axi strategist Stephen Innes. "Economic life will gradually heal; the world will start to move on from all the human suffering that the virus has wrought."

Indications that a surge in new infections in Europe looks to be slowing were also providing some hope, as Britain and France prepare to ease some of their lockdown restrictions.

- 'Surge upon a surge'? -

However, Trump's top infectious diseases expert warned of a fresh jump in cases in the coming weeks after millions of Americans ignored scientific advice and travelled around the country for Thanksgiving.

"There almost certainly is going to be an uptick because of what has happened with the travel," Anthony Fauci told CNN's State of the Union.

"We may see a surge upon a surge" in two or three weeks in the run-up to Christmas, Fauci said.

Parts of Asia are also seeing new spikes, with Hong Kong leaders warning the city is entering a fourth wave, while containment measures have been introduced in South Korea and Japan.

Asian markets dropped at the start of the week, Hong Kong leading the losses with a 2.1 percent slide.

Oil traders are awaiting a meeting of OPEC and other major producers that starts Monday, hoping they agree to continue their output cuts for another few months as the global economy stutters.

However, observers said there was concern that so far there had been no sign they would do so.

The pound rose against the dollar as Britain and the European Union try to hammer out a post-Brexit trade deal, with just weeks to go before the end of the transition period.

"While my belief in a deal being reached is still intact, time is fast running out and you have to wonder how long it can go on before we see a wobble in the markets," warned Craig Erlam, senior market analyst with OANDA Europe.

Elsewhere, bitcoin briefly soared to a new high, the digital unit soaring past its previous high of $19,783 in briefly hitting 19,800 as it sought to test the 20,000 resistance point.

- Key figures around 1700 GMT -

  • New York - Dow: DOWN 1.2 percent at 29,543.60
  • London - FTSE 100: DOWN 1.6 percent at 6,266.19 points (close)
  • Frankfurt - DAX 30: DOWN 0.3 percent at 13,291.16 (close)
  • Paris - CAC 40: DOWN 1.4 percent at 5,518.55 (close)
  • EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.6 percent at 3,507.48
  • Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.8 percent at 26,433.62 (close)
  • Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 2.1 percent at 26,341.49 (close)
  • Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.5 percent at 3,391.76 (close)
  • Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.1944 from $1.1963 at 2200 GMT
  • Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3345 from $1.3311
  • Dollar/yen: UP at 104.37 yen from 104.09 yen
  • Euro/pound: DOWN at 89.50 pence from 89.87 pence
  • West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 1.0 percent at $45.08 per barrel
  • Brent North Sea crude: DOWN 1.3 percent at $47.57


Petroleum Price Revision: Govt increases price of High Speed...

November 30, 2020: The Government of Pakistan in its endeavor to provide maximum relief to the public has decided to absorb most of the increase in international prices of petroleum products.

The prices of MS (Petrol), Kerosene (SKO) and Light Diesel Oil would remain the same w.e.f. 01 December 2020 for the next fifteen days.

However, due to significant increase in the international price of High Speed Diesel (HSD), the price of High Speed Diesel has been increased by Rs. 4.00 per liter for the same period.

Oil Price Revision Summary

ProductOld Price (Rs. / Liter)New Price (Rs. / Liter)Change (Rs. / Liter)
MS (Petrol)100.69100.690.00
High Speed Diesel (HSD)101.43105.43+4.00
Kerosene (SKO)65.2965.290.00
Light Diesel Oil62.8662.860.00


Press Release

Petroleum Division holds consultative meeting on gas, LNG pricing...

November 30, 2020: The Petroleum Division on Monday held a consultative meeting with all provincial stakeholders aimed at finding ways and means to determine a pricing-mechanism for gas and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

The meeting, co-chaired by Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan and Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, was attended by Energy Ministers of all provinces, a news release said.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Finance Minister Taimur Khan Jhagra, Sindh Minister for Energy Imitiaz Sheikh, Punjab Minister for Energy Dr Mohammed Akhtar Malik, Advisor to KP Chief Minister on Energy and Power Hiyamatullah Khan and Balochistan Chief Secretary Fazeel Asghar represented their provinces in the meeting.

The forum explored the issues, challenges and plausibility of implementing a country-wide sustainable and affordable gas pricing mechanism.

Minister for Energy Omar Ayub Khan thanked the provincial ministers for joining the meeting for national cause.

He said Prime Minister Imran Khan was keen to resolve the issues pertaining to gas sector and maintaining the supply chain of gas throughout the country.

Petroleum SAPM Nadeem Babar initiated the discussion to explore sustainable and affordable mechanism for gas tariff regime.

He recapped the salient points of the consultations held by the Federal Government and Federation during the meeting of Council of Common Interests and Gas Seminar organized by the Petroleum Division in September 2020.

He said the local gas production had decreased over the years, which widened the gap between demand and supply of the commodity.

Nadeem Babar also highlighted the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan “to resolve the issue within premises of constitutional right of Provinces which is acceptable for all stakeholders. “

He also spoke of legal constraints of the LNG to be added in gas pool.

He said as per decision of the previous government, the LNG had been declared a Petroleum Product (i.e petrol) and not natural gas, consequently, “the LNG was ‘ringfenced’ from local gas that's why Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority cannot include it in the gas pricing and the government cannot provide cross subsidy mechanism to meet all the demand of gas.”

He also apprised the forum about the cross-subsidy being provided by the government on energy sector.

Provincial representatives admitted the fact of gas shortage across the country and asked the Petroleum Division to prepare data-based formula for pricing mechanism of gas sector.

The SAPM concluded the consultative session describing the meeting as a step in the right direction.

He said follow-up sessions would continue between federal government and provinces to formulate the gas tariff mechanism nationwide.


Gold slips by Rs 1,150 to Rs 108,850 per...

November 30, 2020 (MLN): The price of 24 karat gold on Monday, dipped by Rs 1,150 to Rs 108,850 per tola in the domestic bullion market. The price of yellow metal had closed at 110,000 per tola on Friday.

According to the data released by the All Sindh Saraf Jewellers Association, the price of 10-gram gold also increased by Rs 986to Rs 85,544 against the price of Rs 94,993 reported in the previous session.

Meanwhile, the price of per tola silver and 10-gram silver remained stable at Rs 1,180 and Rs 1,011.65 respectively, the association reported.

In global markets, gold reached $1,772 per ounce, down by $15 while silver was pegged at $22.24 an ounce.

Copyright Mettis Link News

Local LPG price increases by Rs22.88 per 11.8-kg cylinder

November 30, 2020: The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) on Monday issued a price-revision notification of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) for the month of December.

According to the notification, the authority increased the locally produced LPG price by Rs22.88 per cylinder of 11.8 kilogram.

After the revised price, the cylinder would be sold in the open market at Rs1,553.22, which was available at Rs 1,530.34 during the month of November.

Whereas, the per Metric Ton (MT) LPG rate has been fixed at Rs 131,629.75 for the month of December.

The commodity sale price per MT was Rs 129,689.49 during the month of November.

The new price will be effective from December 1.


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