Weekly Economic Roundup

March 22, 2020 (MLN): The latest weekly roundup is here to update the financial and economic data releases as they provide a guide to keeping an eye on trends in the upcoming week.

  • The Weekly Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI) for the Combined Group increased by 0.05% during the week ended Mar 19, 2020 while the SPI increased by 12.85% compared to the corresponding period from last year.

  • The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) in its meeting held on March 17, 2020 in Karachi, has decided to reduce the Policy Rate by 75 Basis Points to 12.5 percent.

  • Pakistan's Forex Reserves decreased by USD 161.60 Million or 0.85% and the total liquid foreign reserves held by the country stood at USD 18,743.00 Million on Mar 13, 2020.

  • The non-government sector has borrowed another net sum of Rs.2.87 billion during the week ended March 13, 2020, which brings the cumulative net borrowing for ongoing fiscal year FY2020 to Rs.240.26 billion. The net borrowing as of prior week was recorded at Rs.237.39 billion.

  • The government of Pakistan has acquired an additional debt of Rs.192.88 billion during the week ended March 13, 2020, which brings its total net borrowing for the ongoing fiscal year 2020 to Rs.421.43 billion. As of prior week, the government had borrowed a net sum of Rs.228.55 billion.

  • Foreign Investors withdrew $65.24 million (net) in a single day session via Special Convertible Rupee Account (SCRA) on Thursday 19, 2020, wherein the majority of the selling worth $52.43 million was witnessed in Treasury Bills (T-bills).

  • Risk-averse foreigners are more prone to hedge their investment from Pakistan's bond market as they withdrew $600 million from government bonds on March 18, 2020. As a result of this, total investment in government bonds stood at $1.34 billion till March 18, 2020.

  • Pakistan witnessed another net outflow of $56.25 million by foreigners from the local market via Special Convertible Rupee Account on March 17, 2020.

  • A net outflow of $83 million from the local markets via Special Convertible Rupee Account was witnessed on March 16, 2020, wherein the majority of the selling by foreign investors was recorded in T-bills.

  • This time, again, foreign investors indulged in excessive selling during the week ended March 13, 2020, as they pulled out a hefty net amount of Rs 153 billion from local securities.

  • The overall urea offtake during February 2020, was about 460 thousand tonnes, which increased by 18.6 percent as compared to the same month of last year.

  • Total nutrient offtake during February 2020 was about 320 thousand tonnes, showing an increase of 34.5 percent over February 2019. Nitrogen offtake increased by 26.3 percent. Phosphate and potash offtake also increased by 87.6 and 65.7 percent.

  • The government has cleared the funds that are reallocated from unutilized World Bank projects which can be used by provinces and federal government for Covid-19 equipment purchases and responses.

  • Pakistan’s current account deficit for the first eight months of Fiscal Year 2020 stood at USD 2.843 Billion compared to USD 9.817 billion from the corresponding period of last year, showing an improvement of USD 6.974 Billion or 71 percent.

  • Pakistan's outstanding debts as of February 29, 2020 stand at a whopping sum of Rs.20.61 trillion whereas total debt at the end of the prior month was Rs.20.41 trillion, meaning that around Rs.200.65 billion were additionally borrowed during this month alone.

  • Seed cotton (Phutti) equivalent to 8.57 million or 8,571,261 bales has reached ginneries across Pakistan till Mar 15, 2020 registering 20.36 percent shortfall compared to the corresponding period of last year.

  • The LSMI output decreased by 5.96% for January 2020 compared to January 2019 and increased by 7.09% when compared to December 2019.

  • Imports into Pakistan during February, 2020 amounted to Rs. 645,648 million as against Rs. 639,572 million in January, 2020 and Rs. 574,036 million during February 2019, showing an increase of 0.95% over January 2020 and of 12.48% over February 2019.

  • The total exports from Pakistan during February, 2020 amounted to Rs. 330,188 million as against Rs. 305,986 million in January 2020 and Rs. 260,592 million during February, 2019 showing an increase of 7.91% over January 2020 and of 26.71% over February 2019.

  • The exports of the food group witnessed an increase of 4.09% YoY and 3.84% MoM to stand at $424 billion in the month of February 2020.

  • The overall exports of Petroleum group & coal have witnessed a decline of 34.77% YoY to stand at $214 million in Jul-Feb FY20 against $328 million in the corresponding period of FY19.

  • Despite 71% YoY improvement in Current Account Deficit (CAD) during 8MFY20, the exports-oriented sector continued to sadden as the improvement is solely accredited to decline in imports and an increase in remittances.

  • Pakistan’s trade deficit in services stood at $400 million during February 2020, showing an increase of 134% as compared to the deficit reported in previous month.

  • Ministry of Planning cleared an amount of 238 million dollars from World Bank funding and endorsed another 350-million-dollar funding offered by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in support of the COVID-19 emergency response and to address the socio-economic disruption associated with it.

  • China has emerged as the leading investor by investing $696.5 million (net) as Direct Foreign Investment (FDI), most of which poured in Pakistan’s Power and Telecom sector under China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) projects.

  • Total Foreign Investment into the country in the month of February 2020 stood at USD 562.6 million compared to a Foreign Investment of USD 1.613 billion in January 2020, showing a significant decline of 65% MoM.

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Posted on: 2020-03-22T12:31:00+05:00

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