Bourse gain for second session; volatility seen ahead

Thursday, 16 October 2014 00:10 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Reuters: Stocks gained for a second straight session on Wednesday, recovering from a near four-week closing low hit early this week, as banks rose in thin volume. However, stock brokers expect volatility in the near future amid worries about early presidential polls and a mixed signal on interest rates. President Mahinda Rajapaksa could hold a snap election in January, nearly two years before he has to, a close ally said, amid signs his popularity is fading among people who criticise his party for abusing power. Yields on 364-day T-bills rose 11 basis points to 6%, the first rise since 20 December 2013. Local investors have been buying stocks as they have no other options in a multi-year low interest rate regime. Sri Lanka’s main stock index gained 1.16%, or 83.36 points, to 7,288.83 after marking its lowest closing level since 17 September on Monday. Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc led gains with a 3.88% rise, while conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc rose 1.13%. The day’s turnover was Rs. 1.6 billion ($12.25 million), more than this year’s daily average of over Rs. 1.36 billion. Foreign investors bought Rs. 201.3 million worth of shares on Wednesday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to Rs. 9.54 billion, exchange data showed.