The eight-day consecutive downtrend at the Nigerian stock market on Tuesday pushed quoted equities to their lowest average values in the past seven months. On a day that the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) decided to retain the benchmark interest rate at 14 per cent, equities’ average year-to-date return worsened to -11.11 per cent.
With inflation rate at 18.33 per cent and minimum interest rate of 14 per cent, the nominal real return on investment for an average investor now stands at -43.44 per cent. The benchmark index at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), the All Share Index (ASI), declined by 0.15 per cent from its opening index of 25,499.00 points to close at a seven-month low at 25,461.34 points.
Aggregate market value of all quoted equities on the NSE indicated net capital loss of N13 billion, dropping from N8.778 trillion to close at N8.765 trillion. Most sectoral and group indices also remained in the negative.
The NSE Oil & Gas Index declined by 2.5 per cent. The NSE Consumer Goods Index declined by 0.02 per cent while the NSE Industrial Goods Index and NSE Insurance Index closed flat. However, the NSE Banking Index recorded a modest gain of 0.05 per cent.
There were 17 decliners to 11 advancers. Total Nigeria remained atop the losers’ list with a loss of N13.45 to close at N255.58. Forte Oil also retained its second position with a loss of N8.05 to close at N74.62. PZ Cussons Nigeria dropped by 50 kobo to close at N14.49. Nascon Allied Industries lost 36 kobo to close at N7.19. Eterna dropped by 25 kobo to close at N2.90 per share. UACN Property Development Company lost 13 kobo to close at N2.67 while Dangote Sugar Refinery dropped by 10 kobo to close at N6.06 per share.
On the upside, Mobil Oil Nigeria led the contrarian stocks with a gain of N5 to close at N195.01. Flour Mills of Nigeria followed with a gain of 85 kobo to close at N17.85. Champion Breweries rose by 19 kobo to close at N2.45. Africa Prudential Registrars added 13 kobo to close at N2.78 while Guaranty Trust Bank rose by 6.0 kobo to close at N21.06 per share.
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Total turnover stood at 120.93 million shares valued at N1.19 billion in 2,397 deals. Low-priced stocks continued to dominate transactions. Diamond Bank was the most active stock with a turnover of 18.33 million shares worth N16.56 million. Access Bank followed with 14.64 million shares valued at N80.76 million. Transnational Corporation of Nigeria placed third with a turnover of 13.7 million shares valued at N9.2 million.
Analysts at Afrinvest Securities noted that the failure of the MPC members to give any guidance or market-friendly opinion on the current administrative structure of the foreign exchange left investors in the wilderness.
“However, committee members failed to give any guidance or market-friendly opinion on the current administrative structure of the foreign exchange market. Thus, with no end yet in sight to the pegged exchange rate regime, we believe sentiment for equities would remain weak in the short to medium term. Nonetheless, we do not rule out possibility of the market closing in the green in sessions ahead given the bargain hunting opportunities in bellwether industrial goods and banking equities,” Afrinvest Securities stated in post-trading review.
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