Stock market opens new weeks with sharp dip

Tuesday, 28 March 2023 00:35 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Colombo stock market began a new week with a sharp dip amidst low activity resulting in a three-month low turnover.

The active S&P SL20 declined by 1.7% and the benchmark ASPI by 1.4%. Turnover was only Rs. 871 million involving 45.4 million shares.

Asia Securities said the indices commenced the week in red due to price losses in BIL (-1.5%), LIOC (-2.5%), EXPO (-2.4%), LOFC (-1.6%), SAMP (-1.9%), SCAP (-3.3%), AAIC (-2.7%), RCL (-4.8%), and HAYL (-2.5%). However, SLTL (+1.8%), TKYON (+2.1%), and CTC (+3.3%) ended with price gains in an otherwise negative session. VONE (-19 points), HNBN (-10 points), and MELS (-9 points) ended as the top laggards on the ASPI. Overall, 31 stocks ended higher while 141 closed with losses.

Market activity remained lacklustre with turnover reaching a three-month low amid a lack of directional cues regarding the domestic debt restructuring. Crossings accounted for 11.3% of turnover with 1 crossing each in NDB (Rs. 51.6 million) and AHUN (Rs. 47.1 million).

Asia said foreigners recorded a net inflow of Rs. 31 million. Net foreign buying topped in TKYO.X at Rs. 32.5 million and selling topped in WIND at Rs. 7.3 million.

First Capital said the bourse ended the day in the red zone at 9,285 losing 134 points as investors opted to remain on the side-lines ahead of the first creditor meeting scheduled for 30 March.

It said continuing from the previous week, the market commenced the day on a negative note observing slow investor activity and limited selling. However, selling pressure was seen across the board as month end margin calls got triggered as the index lost 415 points since closing the IMF deal. Local high net worth investors were fairly active in the market through crossings from NDB and AHUN.

NDB Securities said high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in National Development Bank and Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings. Mixed interest was observed in Sri Lanka Telecom, Lanka IOC and Tokyo Cement Company nonvoting whilst retail interest was noted in Browns Investments, LOLC Finance and Renuka Agri Foods.

The Food, Beverage & Tobacco sector was the top contributor to the market turnover (due to Browns Investments) whilst the sector index lost 0.49%. The share price of Browns Investments recorded a loss of 10 cents to Rs. 6.40.

The Capital Goods sector was the second highest contributor to the market turnover whilst the sector index decreased by 1.77%. Sri Lanka Telecom, Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings, National Development Bank and Lanka IOC were also included amongst the top turnover contributors. The share price of Sri Lanka Telecom increased by Rs. 2 to Rs. 113.50. The share price of Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings lost 10 cents to Rs. 61. The share price of National Development Bank moved down by 70 cents to Rs. 44.30. The share price of Lanka IOC declined by Rs. 4.25 to Rs. 166.25.