The Nigerian equities market extended its gains to the second day as bargain hunting in value stocks by investors continued. The market had rebounded on Wednesday, rising by 0.15 per cent as 18 stocks appreciated. However, the positive performance was sustained thuraday as more stocks appreciated. Thirty-one stocks added value compared with 14 others that shed value.
Market analysts said the positive sentiments are being propelled by investorsâ€™ moves to position themselves ahead of the third quarter earnings season. Companies are expected to begin to announce their results for the Q3 ended September 30, 2017. The renewed demand for by investors, ahead of the Q3 earnings season further lifted the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) by 1.17 per cent to close at 35,773.98. Similarly, the market capitalisation added N142.9 billion to close at N12.3 trillion. Also, volume of trading rose by 82.4 per cent as investors exchanged N317.4 million shares worth N2.9 billion.
The price gainers comprise many bellwether stocks. But Linkage Assurance Plc led the price gainers with 8.7 per cent, trailed by Presco Plc with 5.0 per cent, while Dangote Flour Nigeria Plc followed with 4.7 per cent. NPF Microfinance Bank Plc garnered 4.5 per cent, just as Caverton chalked up 4.3 per cent.
Other top price gainers included: Lafarge Africa Plc (4.0 per cent); Unity Bank Plc (3.6 per cent);Dangote Cement Plc(2.3 per cent); Vitafoam Nigeria Plc(2.2 per cent); United Bank for Africa Plc (2.2 per cent) and Skye Bank Plc (1.9 per cent).
Conversely, Cadbury Nigeria Plc led the price loses with 5.0 per cent, trailed by MRS Oil Nigeria Plc and Continental Reinsurance Plc with 4.9 per cent respectively. Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc shed 4.8 per cent, just as Law Union & Rock Insurance Plc went down by 4.3 per cent. FCMB Bank Group Plc and Transcorp Plc depreciated by 3.7 per cent and 3.6 per cent in that order.
In terms of sectoral performance, the NSE Industrial Goods Index led gainers, with up 2.8 per cent as a result of appreciations in Dangote Cement (+2.4 per cent) and Lafarge Africa(+4.0 per cent). The NSE Banking Index followed with a growth of 0.8 [er cent, while, upticks in Nigerian Breweries Plc (+1.2 per cent) lifted the NSE Consumers Goods Index by 0.5 per cent. Conversely, the NSE Insurance Index and NSE Oil & Gas Index appreciated by 0.4 per cent apiece.