Turnover hits 6 month high at CSE; ASPI reaches 8,500 point level

Wednesday, 10 August 2022 00:28 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Colombo stock market yesterday saw a hive of activity boosting the turnover to over a six-month high whilst the benchmark index reached a psychologically important new level.

Turnover was Rs. 5.3 billion, first time in six months and involved  151 million shares. The All Share Price Index gained by 1% or 77 points to reach the 8,500-point level, which is the highest in four months. The active S&P SL20 gained by 10 points or 0.35%

The indices closed higher for a ninth consecutive session yesterday albeit witnessing a reversal to the downside at the back of the session as investors reacted to the long-pending announcement made by the Public Utilities Commission (PUCSL), approving the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB)’s proposal to increase electricity tariffs by an average of 75%.

This coupled with broad-based profit-taking dragged the ASPI down during the second half of the session, nevertheless the index managed to close in positive territory, supported by price gains in SPEN, LLUB, LIOC, and COMB. On the activity front, the market continued to witness strong retail and HNI participation, particularly in LIOC, as the stock sustained its upward trajectory despite witnessing some profit-booking.

Market turnover crossed the Rs. 5 billion mark, for the first time in six months, predominantly led by LIOC, which recorded Rs. 2 billion of turnover (37.3% of turnover).

Earlier, the ASPI opened trading with a sharp gap-up of 120 points at 8,543 and moved in the narrow range of 8,520-8,550 till mid-afternoon trading. Thereupon, the index reversed course and ended the session at 8,500 (+77 points|+0.9%). However, on the flipside, the S&P SL20 index closed relatively lower (+10 points|+0.4%) due to price losses in EXPO (-3.8%), HAYL (-2.5%), DIPD (-2.3%), and TJL (-1.9%). The breadth of the market remained positive as 105 stocks ended with gains while 91 settled with losses.

Foreigners recorded a net inflow of Rs. 74.3 million while their participation came in at 3% of turnover (previous day 3.7%). Net foreign buying topped in JKH at Rs. 95.1 million and selling topped in EXPO at Rs. 69.5 million.

First Capital said the ASPI sustained firmly in the green zone whilst turnover hit a record high of Rs. 5.3 billion as investor sentiment gathered further momentum with glimmers of hope on key ongoing economic developments.

The Index witnessed a surge of 120 points during the early hours of trading, and slipped a few points towards the latter part due to profit taking in certain retail favourite counters. Subsequently, the index bounced back to an upward trajectory while closing the day at the key psychological level of 8,500 level, registering a four months high point while also gaining 77 points for the day. 

Surge in ASPI was mainly led by SPEN, on the speculation of a positive recovery in the tourism sector backed by the uptrend in tourist arrivals while LLUB and LIOC also joined the bandwagon with notable gains. Market continued to see active retail participation majorly led by market favourite, LIOC (Energy sector) with a contribution of 37% to the total turnover.

NDB Securities said high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in Watawala Plantations, Citizens Development Business Finance and Commercial Bank. Mixed interest was observed in Lanka IOC, Expolanka Holdings and John Keells Holdings whilst retail interest was noted in Browns Investments, SMB Leasing and LOLC Finance.

Energy sector was the top contributor to the market turnover (due to Lanka IOC) whilst the sector index gained 4.89%. The share price of Lanka IOC increased by Rs. 7.50 (5.71%) to close at Rs. 138.75.

Food, Beverage & Tobacco sector was the second highest contributor to the market turnover (due to Watawala Plantations) whilst the sector index increased by 0.14%. The share price of Watawala Plantations gained Rs. 6.80 (8.50%) to close at Rs. 86.80.

Expolanka Holdings, John Keells Holdings and Citizens Development Business Finance were also included amongst the top turnover contributors. The share price of Expolanka Holdings moved down by Rs. 7.75 (3.82%) to close at Rs. 195.25. The share price of John Keells Holdings recorded a gain of 25 cents to close at Rs. 119.25. The share price of Citizens Development Business Finance appreciated by Rs. 5.25 (3%) to close at Rs. 180.