Reuters: Sri Lankan shares slipped yesterday to a more than one-week closing low, as selling by foreign investors and some concerns about political stability weighed on sentiment, dealers said.
Shares hit a more than three-week high last week after two key parties decided to remain in the ruling coalition, allaying fears of a government collapse. President Maithripala Sirisena reshuffled his cabinet on Sunday (25 February), appointing his Prime Minister as the Law And Order Minister, after the governing coalition suffered a series of defeats in local elections earlier this month.
“Some block deals boosted the turnover. However, the market is still mixed on political stability. Some investors say the changes are good, while some feel they have failed to ensure stability,” said First Capital Equities CEO Jaliya Wijeratne.
The Colombo stock index ended 0.23% weaker at 6,560.32, its lowest close since 15 February. The index rose 0.18% last week.
Turnover stood at Rs. 3.3 billion ($21.32 million), the highest since 8 November 2017, and more than three times of this year’s daily average of Rs. 935.9 million. Foreign investors sold a net Rs. 51.1 million worth of shares, but they have been net buyers of Rs. 6.4 billion worth of equities so far this year.
Shares of AIA Insurance Lanka PLC ended 18.9% weaker, while Lanka Hospitals Corp PLC fell 5.1%.