Bourse slips from near seven-week high

Tuesday, 8 April 2014 00:01 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

REUTERS: The Sri Lankan index slipped on Monday from a near seven-week high hit in the previous session, despite foreign investors buying risky assets. The main stock index ended 0.1%, or 6.17 points weaker at 6,048.38, declining from its highest since 17 February hit in the previous session. The day’s turnover was Rs. 537.5 million ($ 4.1 million) turnover, well below this year’s daily average of Rs. 1 billion. The bourse saw net foreign inflows of Rs. 211.1 million, though foreigners have net sold Rs. 9.39 billion worth of shares so far this year. Lanka Orix Leasing Co PLC shares fell 3.72% to end at Rs. 75.10, while Cargills (Ceylon) PLC fell 3.66% to close at Rs. 136.80. Investor sentiment is yet to recover after the United Nations announced it would probe alleged war crimes by the island nation, analysts said. The bourse has suffered Rs. 5.26 billion in foreign outflows in the seven sessions since 28 March due to the exit of a large foreign fund. The United Nations has launched an inquiry into war crimes allegedly committed by both Sri Lankan state forces and Tamil rebels during a conflict that ended in 2009, saying the Government had failed to investigate properly. Analysts said the outcome of the resolution was expected, but investors’ sentiments have been dented over concerns it could hurt the country’s economy. Several potential buyers of risky assets are waiting for a clear direction.