Stock market ends week weaker

Friday, 5 November 2010 06:23 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

COLOMBO,  (Reuters) - Sri Lanka’s benchmark share index fell on Thursday for a third session as investors were underwhelmed by earnings released so far, with some raising cash to pay for an initial public offering, analysts said.

Sri Lanka’s main share index fell 16.46 points or 0.25 percent to 6658.45. It is Asia’s best performer in 2010 with a 96.7 percent gain.                                        

Local gas distributor Laugfs said its 2.5 billion rupee IPO was oversubscribed a few hours after it opened on Thursday. Buyers still sold shares on Thursday since they can pay for it by next week. The offered was closed on Thursday.

The bourse is trading at the highest forward price-to-earnings ratio in Asia and global emerging markets at 20.1 times, compared with 13.5 and 12.8 respectively, Thomson Reuters StarMine data showed. The CSE’s 14-day relative strength index is at 53.2, more towards the upper neutral limit


Local investors had been bullish on September quarter earnings, with 61 listed firms releasing so far showing average growth of 247 percent year-on-year. However, analysts said some investors are underwhelmed, having had outsized expectations.

Foreign investors have been net sellers throughout the year with 26 billion rupees so far this year, and on Thursday they sold a net 31.5 million rupees worth’ of shares.

Turnover was 1.1 billion rupees ($9.5 million), nearly double the 2009 daily average of 593.6 million rupees and less than half this year’s daily average of 2.5 billion.

The rupee closed firmer at 111.60/62 rupees a dollar from Wednesday’s close of 111.69/70, matching a global dollar selloff after the U.S. Federal Reserve said it would buy $600 billion in bonds by June in a new round of quantitative easing.

Markets will remain closed on Friday for a Hindu religious holiday and normal trading will resume on Monday.

Laugfs IPO through

LAUGFS Gas Ltd., said its Rs. 2.5 billion Initial Public Offering which has been oversubscribed   closed on its official opening day yesterday.

The IPO involved 75 million voting shares at Rs. 23 each and 52 million non voting shares at Rs.15 each.

A preliminary figure of the oversubscription is expected to be announced on Monday.