Dangote Cement Plc staved off growing underlying negative sentiments from overturning the overall positive position at the Nigerian stock market as the equities market reopened on Monday to profit-taking trading.
With 25 losers to 13 gainers, Dangote Cement pulled away the market from a negative close. Dangote Cement, Nigeria’s most capitalised quoted company with nearly a quarter of market’s capitalisation, rose by 3.75 per cent, equivalent to a gain of N93.55 billion. Dangote Cement’s share price added N5.49 to close at N151.99.
With the N93.55 billion gain by Dangote Cement, the overall market position closed with an overall gain of N48 billion. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities rose from N8.491 trillion to close at N8.539 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI), the value-based common index that tracks prices of all quoted equities, rose by 0.56 per cent from 24,689.69 points to close at 24,827.50 points. The gain on Monday helped to reduce the negative overhang with the average year-to-date return improving to -13.32 per cent.
Sectoral analysis underlined the wide negative sentiments in spite of the overall closing position. The NSE Banking Index dropped by 1.0 per cent. The NSE Consumer Goods Index declined by 1.4 per cent. The NSE Insurance Index slipped by 0.1 per cent. However, the NSE Industrial Goods Index appreciated by 2.0 per cent while the NSE Oil & Gas Index inched up by 0.6 per cent.
Other highly capitalised stocks that boosted the market performance included Seplat Petroleum Development Company, which led the gainers with a gain of N9.20 to close at N261.31 and Guaranty Trust Bank, which added 12 kobo to close at N16.67.
On the downside, Nestle Nigeria, NSE’s highest-priced stock, led the losers with a drop of N25 to close at N670. International Breweries followed with a loss of N1 to close at N19.14. Conoil lost 91 kobo to close at N17.42. Zenith Bank dropped by 60 kobo to close at N11.60. Guinness Nigeria declined by 58 kobo to close at N118.72. Cadbury Nigeria lost 22 kobo to close at N17.86 per share. Nigerian Breweries declined by 20 kobo to close at N97.20. Dangote Sugar Refinery slipped by 17 kobo to close at N5.53 while FBN Holdings dropped by 16 kobo to close at N3.77 per share.
Turnover remained around average with the exchange of 283.52 million shares valued at N2.92 million in 3,040 deals. Zenith Bank was the most active stock with a turnover of 140.8 million valued at N1.64 billion in 609 deals. Guaranty Trust Bank staged a distant second with a turnover of 23.2 million shares worth N385.86 million in 239 deals. Fidelity Bank ranked third with a turnover of 21.36 million shares worth N26.33 million in 51 deals.
“Ahead of full year earnings and corporate actions, we expect more bargain hunting in dividend-paying stocks. However, the volatility in market performance buttresses the need for investors to stay cautious in timing entry, especially for short-term holding period investments, even as we consider the current prices attractive for medium to long term investors,” Afrinvest Securities, a Lagos-based dealer on the NSE, stated in post-trading note.
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