Equities open with N110b loss

Equities open with N110b lossNigerian equities reopened yesterday on the negative side as continuing sell pressure shaved off N110 billion in investors’ worth.

Benchmark indices at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) showed a market-wide sell pressure with average price decline closing the trading session at 0.79 per cent.

The continuing depreciation in share prices further worsened the negative average year-to-date return at the Nigerian stock market to -9.83 per cent.

Aggregate market value of all quoted equities dropped from its opening value of N13.922 trillion to close yesterday at N13.812 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI)- the main index that tracks all share prices, declined from its opening index of 28,566.79 points to close at 28,340.98 points.

With more than two decliners for every advancer, most sectoral indices also closed in the red. The NSE Banking Index recorded the highest loss of 1.56 per cent. The NSE Industrial Goods Index dropped by 1.03 per cent. The NSE Oil and Gas Index declined by 0.74 per cent while the NSE Insurance Index slipped by 0.33 per cent. On the upside, the NSE Consumer Goods Index appreciated by 0.16 per cent.

There were 21 losers to 10 gainers. Total Nigeria led the losers with a drop of N10 to close at N130. Dangote Cement followed with a loss of N3 to close at N170. Guaranty Trust Bank lost 90 kobo to close at N29. MTN Communications Nigeria declined by 65 kobo to close at N129. Dangote Sugar Refinery and Eterna declined by 25 kobo each to close at N10.35 and N3.40 respectively. Zenith Bank lost 20 kobo to close at N18.80 while FBN Holdings and Lafarge Africa dropped by 15 kobo each to close at N5.85 and N13.50 respectively.

On the positive side, Nestle Nigeria led the gainers with a gain of N3 to close at N1,228. Nigerian Breweries followed with a gain of 50 kobo to close at N58.50. Conoil added 40 kobo to close at N20.40. Vitafoam Nigeria rose by 16 kobo to close at N3.70 while Dangote Flour Mills cchalked up 10 kobo to close at N17.50 per share.

Total turnover stood at 175.17 million shares valued at N2.14 billion in 3,111 deals. Wapic Insurance was the most active stock with a turnover of 42.03 million shares valued at N16.81 million. United Bank for Africa followed with a turnover of 24.24 million shares worth N141.95 million while Guaranty Trust Bank placed third with 16.04 million shares valued at N478.82 million.

Most analysts remained cautious about the outlook for the stock market in the immediate to short term.

“For the rest of the week, we still expect the bearish run to continue. Nevertheless, we expect the release of half year corporate results and bargain hunting opportunities to drive activities in the market,” Afrinvest Securities stated.

Analysts at Cordros Securities also reiterated their cautious position on the market. “Our outlook for equities in the short to medium term remains conservative, amidst the absence of catalysts to drive positive market returns,” Cordros Securities stated.

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