Stories by Nkiruka Nnorom

AS the year rolls to an end this week, capital market operators have said that favourable external conditions bolstered by stability in foreign exchange and energy supply will push the market to a further positive close.

The market advanced modestly last week with the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE, All Share Index, ASI, closing 0.22 basis points higher to 38,522.14. The market opened the trading week to losses as profit taking continued to dominate trading activities.

On Wednesday, the bourse staged a mini-recovery midweek driven by strong closes in the oil and gas sector and industrial goods sector.

Consumer demand

Gains on the bourse continued at week close albeit marginally with the ASI notching 45 basis points at week close.

The operators believe that receding cost pressure and strengthening consumer demand among other things would present a strong equity market performance going into 2018.

Analysts at Vetiva Capital, said: “The equities market enjoyed a very good 2017, advancing by over 43 per by the close of business last week. Chief among the drivers of this surge was the introduction of the “Investors & Exporters” foreign exchange window (“I&E” window) which revived investors’ confidence and boosted liquidity in the  foreign exchange (FX) market. Going forward, we anticipate continued progress on this front amidst a positive outlook for FX earnings on the back of stable oil prices and production levels.”

For this week, they projected another marginally trading session, while their counterparts at Cowry Asset Management Limited said that the market would be dominated by a mix of bargain hunting and profit taking following portfolio re-balancing by portfolio managers in a bid to end the year profitably.

Meanwhile, transaction in the stock market closed on a positive note last week with the market capitalisation rising by N31 billion to N13.709 trillion from N13.678 trillion, representing 0.22 percent increase. The ASI rose by the same margin to 38,522.14 points from 38,436.08 basis points.

Similarly, all the sectorial indices with the exception of the consumer goods sector closed in the positive territory. The oil and gas sector rose the most driven by 10.43 percent increase in Seplat Petroleum Development Company’s share. The sector achieved 4.43 percent increase during the week.

The insurance sector rose by 1.14 percent on account of 18.97 percent increase in Linkage Assurance Plc, while the banking sector driven by 6.25 percent and 5.47 percent increase in Fidelity Bank Plc and FCMB Group Plc, followed with 0.91 percent increase. The industrial goods sector recorded marginal growth of 0.38 percent, while the consumer goods sector fell by 1.37 percent during the week.

At the end of the week, investors traded 2.243 billion shares worth N139.789 billion in 18,466 deals in contrast to 1.852 billion shares valued at N51.523 billion in 23,863 deals.

The financial services sector, measured by volume, led the activity chart with 984.584 million shares valued at N10.588 billion traded in 11,116 deals; thereby contributing 43.89 percent and 7.57 percent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.

The industrial goods sector followed with 564.804 million shares worth N125.378 billion in 927 deals. The third place was occupied by conglomerates sector with a turnover of 804.447 million shares worth N561.921 million in 689 deals.


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