The All Share Index of the nation’s stock market has dropped below the 30,000 mark again as the market reversed gains recorded on previous sessions.
On Wednesday, the market shed 63 basis points as the market capitalisation of equities listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange dropped by N66.8bn to close at N11.236tn, following profit-taking in Dangote Cement Plc, Nestlé Nigeria Plc and International Breweries Plc.
Activity level weakened as 304.863 million shares valued at N2.630bn exchanged hands in 3,902 deals, representing a 3.6 per cent and 27.8 per cent decline in volume and value traded, respectively, which dragged the year-to-date return to -4.9 per cent.
The top traded stocks by volume were Japaul Oil and Maritime Services Plc (92.3 million units), Access Bank Plc (27.5 million units) and United Bank for Africa Plc (25.9 million units) while Zenith Bank Plc (N543.6m), Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (N515.2m) and Unilever Nigeria Plc (N315.6m) led the top traded stocks by value.
Performance across sectors was mixed as two out of five indices closed on a positive note.
The banking and insurance indices advanced by 0.9 per cent and 0.8 per cent, respectively following major gains in Zenith Bank, United Bank for Africa Plc and AIICO Insurance Plc.
On the flip side, the oil and gas index led decliners, down by 4.6 per cent on the back of major sell-offs in Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc, Oando Plc and 11 Plc.
Similarly, profit-taking in Nestlé, International Breweries and Dangote Cement drove the consumer goods and industrial goods lower by 1.1 per cent and 0.7 per cent, respectively.
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) strengthened to 1.9x from 1.2x recorded on Tuesday as 26 stocks advanced against 14 decliners.
The top gainers were Dangote Flour Mills Plc, BOC Gases and Fidson Healthcare Plc, while the top losers were Conoil Plc, International Breweries and A.G Leventis Nigeria Plc.