Market Opens Negatively on Continuing Bearish Sentiments

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Goddy Egene

The stock market opened the week on negative note yesterday on continuing sell off in bellwether stocks. As a result, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) declined by 0.06 per cent to close lower at 31,125.39 while market capitalisation shed N6.5 billion to close at N11.6 trillion.

Contrary to expectations that the market will witness some bargain hunting following losses suffered by most stocks last week, the first day of the week recorded more price losses. In all, 20 stocks depreciated while 11 stocks appreciated.

Dangote Cement Plc, Zenith Bank Plc and Transcorp Plc, which some of the highly capitalised stocks, were among the price losers. But Ikeja Hotel Plc with 9.6 per cent, trailed by Cutix Plc that went down by 8.8 per cent. Sovereign Trust Insurance Plc shed 8.0 per cent, just as Wema Bank Plc, Linkage Assurance Plc and NEM Insurance Plc dipped by 7.7 per cent, 6.7 per cent and 6.0 per cent respectively.

UACN Property Development Company Plc fell by 4.6 per cent, while LASACO Assurance Plc, FCMB Group Plc and Transcorp Plc closed 3.2 per cent, 2.7 per cent and 2.4 per cent lower in that order.

Transcorp Plc last week held its annual general meeting (AGM), where the chairman of the conglomerate, Mr. Tony Elumelu said it remained committed to the fulfilment of the purpose for which it was founded which is improving lives and transforming the country.

“We believe that excellent execution of our strategic priorities will be critical in our success as a company and a Group and in our achievement of this purpose. Excellent execution will therefore remain our philosophy as we step into 2019. As we face the challenges of the times ahead. I am convinced that our shared values of enterprise, excellence and execution provide the surest route to achieving our 2019 aspirations,” he told shareholders.

Meanwhile, Dangote Flour Mills Plc led the price gainers with 7.3 per cent, followed by Union Diagnostics and Clinical Services Plc with 7.1 per cent. Mcnichols Plc chalked up 5.2 per cent, while Caverton Offshore Services Group Plc garnered 3.6 per cent. United Capital Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc appreciated by 1.7 per cent and 1.3 per cent respectively.

Activity also weakened as volume and value traded fell 2.0 per cent 42.2 per cent to 205.4 million shares and N1.9 billion respectively. The top traded stocks by volume were Access Bank Plc (56.0 million shares), Zenith Bank (27.6 million shares) and UBA (22.6 million units).