By Goddy Egene
The stock market recorded a positive performance last week as the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) appreciated 0.58 per cent compared with a decline of 0.08 per cent the previous week.
The NSE ASI index rose to close at 24,427.73, while market capitalisation added N73.1 billion to close at N12.743 trillion.
Sentiments remained weak because the market depreciated in four days.
However, a one-off gain of 6.5 per cent by Dangote Cement Plc on Thursday lifted the market to the positive territory. The cement manufacturer’s gain was obviously influenced by investors’ reaction to its positive half-year (H1) financial results. Contrary to apprehension that the COVID-19 might affect most corporate results for H1, Dangote Cement posted increase in revenue and profitability.
The leading cement firm posted a revenue of N476.852 billion for the H1 ended June 30, 2020, showing an increase of 2.0 per cent, from N467.730 billion in the corresponding period of 2019. Profit after tax rose by 5.8 per cent from N119.240 billion to N126.143 billion in 2020.
Also, apart from the NSE ASI closing higher last week, volume and value of trading improved as investors exchanged 1.350 billion shares worth N14.433 billion in 16,723 deals, compared with 1.016 billion shares valued at N7.436billion that were traded in 18,092deals the previous week.
Following the gain by Dangote Cement only the NSE Industrial Index closed positively last week. The Oil & Gas Index led the decliners with 4.7 per cent, while the NSE Insurance Index shed 0.8 per cent.
The NSE Banking Index went down by 0.6 per cent just as the NSE Consumer Goods Index fell 0.4 per cent.
The Financial Services industry remained that most trading leading the activity chart with 847.677million shares valued at N5.649billion traded in 9,068deals; thus contributing 62.7 per cent and 39.1 per cent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively. The Conglomerates industry followed with 176.425million shares worth N821.337million in 400 deals. The third place was The Consumer Goods industry occupied the third position with a turnover of 158.022million shares worth N3.768billion in 2,563deals.
Trading in the top three equities namely: FBN Holdings Plc, UAC of Nigeria Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc accounted for 434.502million shares worth N2.408billion in 2,270deals, contributing 32.2 per cent and 16.7 per cent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.
The price movement chart showed that 28 equities appreciated higher than 26 equities in the previous week while 25 equities depreciated lower than 36 equities in the previous week. Fidson Healthcare Plc led the price gainers with 18.1 per cent, trailed by Unity Bank Plc that chalked up 15.5 per cent. Royal Exchange Plc garnered 14.8 per cent, just as Custodian Investment Plc appreciated by 14.5 per cent.
Julius Berger Nigeria Plc gained 10 per cent, while Honeywell Flour Mills Plc and May & Baker Nigeria Plc rose 8.3 per cent and 7.9 per cent in that order. Vitafoam Nigeria Plc chalked up 7.8 per cent, just as NPF Microfinance Bank Plc and Ardova Plc went up by 7.5 per cent and 7.1 per cent respectively.
Conversely, Prestige Assurance Plc led the price losers with 14.8 per cent. International Breweries Plc trailed with 10 per cent, just as Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc dipped by 10 per cent. Cornerstone Insurance Plc shed 9.1 per cent, while CAP Plc went down 8.2 per cent.
Other top price losers included: Consolidated Hallmark Insurance Plc (8.1 per cent); LASACO Assurance Plc (7.1 per cent); Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals Plc (6.6 per cent); BUA Cement Plc (5.9 per cent) and Sterling Bank Plc (5.6 per cent).