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High-cap stocks drag equities to negative opening



High-cap stocks drag equities to negative opening

There were exactly two advancers for every decliner as the Nigerian equities market reopened on Monday but losses by large-cap stocks in the financial services and oil and gas sectors overshadowed the overall market situation.

Benchmark indices at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) showed a marginal decline of 0.04 per cent, equivalent to net capital depreciation of N6 billion.

With 34 advancers against 17 decliners, the negative overall market position was due mainly to losses suffered by highly capitalised stocks such as Seplat Petroleum Development Company, Guaranty Trust Bank, Unilever Nigeria, Forte Oil and Lafarge Africa.

The All Share Index (ASI)-the common value-based index that tracks share prices at the Exchange (NSE) declined from its opening index of 41,472.10 points to close at 41,454.30 points. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities also dropped marginally from its opening value of N14.982 trillion to close at N14.976 trillion. Average year-to-date return slipped to 8.40 per cent.

“Despite the negative performance today (Monday), investor sentiment strengthened, thus we anticipate a rebound in market performance in subsequent sessions as investors continue to seek for bargain opportunities,” Afrinvest Securities stated.

Read also: NSE RoundUp! Nigerian equities’ return dwindles as global stocks continue decline

Sectoral analysis underlined the negative impact of the large-cap stocks. The NSE Oil and Gas Index dropped by 2.5 per cent. The NSE Industrial Goods Index followed with a drop of 2.0 per cent while the NSE Banking Index dipped by 0.4 per cent. On the positive side, the NSE Insurance Index appreciated by 1.3 per cent while the NSE Consumer Goods Index inched up by 0.3 per cent.

Seplat led the decliners with a loss of N21.90 to close at N700.10. Forte Oil followed with a loss of N4 to close at N40. Unilever Nigeria declined by N2.75 to close at N52.45. Lafarge Africa lost N2 to close at N48 while Guaranty Trust Bank dropped by N1.60 to close at N45.30 per share.

On the upside, Presco led the advancers with a gain of N3.30 to close at N72. Nestle Nigeria rose by N3 to close at N1,320. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria appreciated by N2.55 to close at N28.05. Nigerian Breweries gathered N2.50 to close at N129 while Cadbury Nigeria added 70 kobo to close at N15.25 per share.

Total turnover volume and value declined by 32.2 per cent and 24.08 per cent respectively, showing the slowdown in the momentum of activities. Investors exchanged 3790.93 million shares valued at N5.13 billion in 4,913 deals. Access Bank was the most active stock with a turnover of 77.91 million shares valued at N885.12 million. Zenith Bank followed with a turnover of 58.42 million shares worth N1.78 billion while United Bank for Africa placed thid with 43.95 million shares worth N525.01 million.

“We expect sentiment to be mixed in the week ahead albeit with a bullish tilt as the current valuation provides attractive bargain,” SCM Capital stated.



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