Again, the bears regained dominance at the end of transactions yesterday on the equity sector of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), following price losses incurred by most blue chip companies, forcing the All-Share Index to drop marginally by 0.02 per cent.
Yesterday, the ASI shed 5.88 absolute points or 0.02 per cent to close at 32,375.12 points. Also, the market capitalisation declined by N3 billion to close at N11.819 trillion.Analysts had predicted negative outlook for the market owing to the absence of a near term positive catalyst even as foreign investors’ response to political risk lingers.
Analysts at Afrinvest Limited, said: “We continue to observe improving sentiment in the market, which we opine results from investors positioning in fundamentally sound stocks.
“Despite the negative performance yesterday, we expect the performance of the market to be uplifted by close of the week on bargain hunting activities.” Also, APT Securities and Funds Limited, said: “The market shuffles in between sell-offs and mild bargain hunting as outlook remains negative in the near term. We therefore maintain cautious stand point as foreign investors’ response to political risk lingers.”
The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are; International Breweries, PZ Cussons Nigeria, FBN Holdings, AXA Mansard and United Bank for Africa (UBA).However, market breadth closed positive, with 24 gainers versus 13 losers. Forte Oil recorded the highest price gain of 10 per cent to close at N22, while Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN), followed with a gain of 9.73 per cent to close at N24.80, per share.
Regency Alliance Insurance and Sovereign Trust Insurance gained 9.09 per cent to close at 24 kobo each, while Prestige Assurance appreciated by 8.77 per cent to close at 62 kobo per share.On the other hand, AXA Mansard led the losers’ chart by 9.65 per cent to close at N2.06, while Capital Oil trailed at a loss of eight per cent to close at 23 kobo per share.
PZ Cussons Nigeria depreciated 7.41 per cent to close at N12.50, while Consolidated Hallmark Insurance, and International Breweries shed 6.25 per cent each to close at 30 kobo and N30 per share, respectively.
The total volume traded depreciated by 29.45 per cent to 190.35 million shares worth N1.77 billion, and traded in 2,780 deals. Transactions in the shares of Red Star Express topped the activity chart with 60.33 million shares valued at N298.31 million. Zenith Bank followed with 24.17 million shares worth N500.25 million, while Oando traded 22.11 million shares valued at N112.61 million. Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) traded 9.89 million shares valued at N12.22 million, while Fidelity Bank transacted 6.28 million shares worth N10.41 million.