After losing about N1.6 trillion in January, Nigerian equities opened the new month on a weak note as selling pressured continued most capitalised stocks at the market. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) dropped by N31 billion on Monday, the first day of February.
The All Share Index (ASI)-the value-based common index that tracks prices of all quoted equities on the NSE, declined by 0.37 per cent from its opening index of 23,916.15 points to close at 23,826.76 points. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities also dropped from N8.225 trillion to close at N8.194 trillion. The decline on Monday nudged the negative average year-to-date return at the NSE to -16.81 per cent.
The decline was driven by both the spread of the losses as well as the large-cap stocks that dominated the losers’ list. Forte Oil led the 25-stock losers’ list with a loss of N14.89 to close at N282.94. Seven-Up Bottling Company followed with a loss of N9.80 to close at N186.20. Total Nigeria dropped by N7.50 to close at N142.50. Guinness Nigeria lost N4.30 to close at N111.20. Conoil fell by N2.40 to close at N22.34. Dangote Cement lost N1.85 to close at N127.06. Unilever Nigeria dropped by N1.76 to close at N33.48. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria lost N1.34 to close at N25.65. Northern Nigeria Flour Mills declined by 38 kobo to close at N7.35 while Portland Paints and Products Nigeria dropped by 20 kobo to close at N3.80 per share.
Total turnover stood at 262.37 million shares worth N5.1 billion in 3,893 deals. United Bank for Africa was the most active stock with a turnover of 96.55 million shares worth N278.27 million. FBN Holdings placed second on the activities’ chart with a turnover of 23.15 million shares worth N93.21 million while Zenith Bank recorded a turnover of 21.97 million shares worth N297.23 million.
Analysts at FSDH Securities attributed the low performance of the market to investors’ apathy.
Analysts at Afrinvest Securities noted that the decline was as a result of weaker sentiment for large stocks in the manufacturing and oil and gas sectors.
“Our overall short term outlook remains bearish on macroeconomic concerns and forex inflexibility; hence, we reiterate our long term investment case on Nigerian equities. However, investors with short holding period and less risk aversion could take advantage of irregular price cycles as we anticipate high volatility in the market anchored by fluctuations in monetary policy expectations and crude oil prices,” Afrinvest Securities stated.
On the upside, Seplat Petroleum Development Company led the 20-stock gainers’ list with a gain of N9.71 to close at N203.96. Zenith Bank International followed with a gain of N1.08 to close at N13.69. International Breweries rose by 80 kobo to close at N16.80. Cement Company of Northern Nigeria added 48 kobo to close at N10.08. UACN Property Development Company rose by 26 kobo to close at N5.46 while Mobil Oil Nigeria gathered 10 kobo to close higher at N140.60 per share.
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