After hauling net capital gain of N157 billion in one of the best returns in the global equities market last week, Nigerian equities reopened on Monday on the same uptrend as investors continued to scramble for bargains.
With more than two advancers to every decliner, aggregate market value of all quoted equities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) rose from its opening value of N9.069 trillion to close at N9.132 trillion, representing a gain of N63 billion. The All Share Index (ASI)-the value-based index that tracks prices at the Exchange, trended upward by 0.70 per cent to close at 26,418.33 points as against its opening index of 26,235.63 points. The sustained rally over the past six trading sessions has helped to reduce the negative average year-to-date return to -1.70 per cent.
Sectoral indices showed widespread bargain-hunting for value stocks. The NSE Consumer Goods Index rose by 2.0 per cent. The NSE Insurance Index followed with 1.8 per cent. The NSE Oil & Gas Index rose by 1.4 per cent while the NSE Banking Index inched up by 0.4 per cent. The NSE Industrial Goods Index recorded the only loss among the tracked indices, dropping slightly by 0.02 per cent.
Nestle Nigeria led the 26-stock gainers’ list with a gain of N15.01 to close at N760. Seven-Up Bottling Company followed with N9.20 to close at N103.89. Nigerian Breweries rose by N2.70 to close at N130. Unilever Nigeria added N1 to close at N34. Okomu Oil Palm appreciated by 75 kobo to close at N47.80 per share. Oando rose by 72 kobo to N7.89. Stanbic IBTC Holdings gathered 60 kobo to close at N25.10 while Guaranty Trust Bank added 35 kobo to close at N27.05.
Total turnover stood at 267.63 million shares valued at N3.26 billion in 3,907 deals. Oando awas the most active stock with a turnover of 47.53 million shares valued at N374.65 million. Zenith Bank followed with 30.37 million shares worth N489.17 million while Guaranty Trust Bank placed third with 27.27 million shares valued at N737.18 million.
On the downside, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated led the 12-stock losers’ list with a loss of 11 kobo to close at N7.89. Champion Breweries and Dangote Flour Mills dropped by 10 kobo each to close at N2.04 and N4.20 respectively while FBN Holdings, Africa Prudential, Cement Company of Northern Nigeria and UAC of Nigeria lost 9.0 kobo each to close at N3.53, N2.60, N4.51 and N14.40 respectively.
“The upbeat performance in the equities market has been mainly driven by solid first quarter 2017 earnings as well as knock-on impact of improved foreign exchange liquidity on sentiment. Whilst we acknowledge these fundamental drivers of sentiment, the market breached the overbought boundary today with the benchmark index 14-Day RSI reaching the 70.0 point threshold. On this basis, we expect investors to take a breather in subsequent session,” analysts at Afrinvest Securities stated.
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