Bearish Trading Returns on Losses by Bellwether Stocks

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Trading Floor

Goddy Egene

The market returned to negative territory yesterday after one day of growth, following losses recorded by bellwethers. After five days of decline, the market had rebounded the previous day. However, the bears returned yesterday dragging the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) by 0.5 per cent to close at 31,213.47. Similarly, market capitalisation shed N54.7 billion to close at N11.6 trillion.

A total of 20 stocks depreciated dominated by bellwethers, compared with nine that appreciated. Stocks such as Zenith Bank Plc, Nestle Nigeria Plc, Dangote Cement Plc, Access Bank, FBN Holdings Plc and Guaranty Trust Bank Plc.

However, Learn Africa Plc led the price gainers with 9.6 per cent, trailed by Transcorp Hotels Plc with 9.2 per cent. Law Union and Rock Insurance Plc and Eterna Plc shed 8.9 per cent and 8.3 per cent respectively.

Other top price losers include: LASACO Assurance Plc (6.0 per cent); May & Baker Nigeria Plc (2.9 per cent); FCMB Group Plc (2.0 per cent); Jaiz Bank Plc(1.9 per cent).

On positive side, Mcnichols led the price gainers with 9.6 per cent trailed by Dangote Flour Mills Plc with 8.4 per cent. Ikeja Hotel Plc chalked up 7.9 per cent, just as Sterling Bank Plc garnered 5.9 per cent. The lender recently raised a bond of N32.9 billion through its month listed Sterling Investment Management SPV Plc under a N65.00 billion Debt Issuance Programme .

The bond was listed on the FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange and Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). According to the Managing Director and Chief Executive of Sterling Bank Plc, Mr. Abubakar Suleiman, The success of the bond reflects the increasing appetite of local institutional investors for long term debt instruments. We are happy with the very strong outcome which shows investors’ confidence in Sterling Bank Plc, and further strengthens and diversifies our corporate funding strategy.”

Meanwhile, activity level was mixed as volume traded shed 53.1 per cent to 177 million shares while value traded appreciated by 13.2 per cent to N2.6 billion. The top traded stocks by volume were Zenith Bank (80.8 million shares), Sterling Bank Plc (16.8 million) and FCMB Group (12.1 million shares) while Zenith Bank (N1.8 billion), GTBank (N228.2 million) and Nestle (N109.4 million) were the top traded stocks by value.

In terms of sectoral performance, two of five indices tracked trended southwards while one closed flat. The NSE Industrial Goods Index led with a decline of 0.5 per cent, trailed by the NSE Banking Index with 0.4 per cent. On the positive side, the NSE Insurance Index gained 0.5 per cent, while the NSE Oil & Gas Index appreciated by 0.1 per cent.