- Net foreign selling tops Rs. 42 b mark YTD
The Colombo stock market yesterday suffered one of its steepest falls with Rs. 146 billion in value wiped off as investors resorted to panic selling whilst the more optimistic questioned their motive.
The All Share Price Index dipped by 3.7% or 328 points and the S&P SL20 plunged by 4% or 131 points. Though an apparent sell-off, turnover however was Rs. 6.7 billion involving only 228 million shares. Market capitalisation amounted to Rs. 3.80 trillion, down from Rs. 3.95 trillion on Friday. Since an all-time high was achieved a fortnight ago, the market›s value has dropped by Rs. 356 billion though year-to-date (YTD). CSE›s market capitalisation is up 28.5% with ASPI up 26% and S&P SL20 by 21.5%.
Net foreign selling increased yesterday to Rs. 697 million, pushing the YTD outflow to over Rs. 42 billion to Rs. 42.5 billion. Recent biggest gainers were obvious contributors to yesterday’s fall. Expolanka contributed 109 points, LOLC 37 points, Browns Investments 23 points, Commercial Leasing 17 points and Hayleys eight points.
Most valuable and profitable corporate Expolanka saw 20 million of its shares change hands via 10,132 trades for Rs. 3 billion. Its share price declined by 15% or Rs. 25 to Rs. 145.25. LOLC was down by 7% or Rs. 35.25 to Rs. 498. Browns Investments was the second largest value wise at Rs. 828 million with 94.5 million shares traded.
First Capital said the bourse closed lower and remained in the red zone due to an increased scepticism among investors over prevailing uncertain economic conditions.
“The index fell 266 points within the first hour as the sell-off of major stocks continued. Following 55 minutes of trade halt, investors panicked and urged to collect profits during the latter part of the session; that led to an intraday low of 8,503 and ended up closing the market at a three-week low of 8,536,” First Capital added.
It said turnover was led by a joint contribution of 69% from the Transportation and Capital Goods sectors.
NDB Securities said high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in Hayleys and Hemas Holdings. Mixed interest was observed in LOLC Holdings, Royal Ceramics and Teejay Lanka whilst retail interest was noted in Browns Investments, Industrial Asphalts and Expolanka Holdings.