By Peter Egwuatu
The equity market on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE on Monday was bearish, with the All Share Index closing lower by 0.32 percent to 35,311.36 points, as profit taking by investors in the shares of Dangote Cement drag down the Industrial Goods Index.
The negative performance of the equity market was driven by profit taking in Dangote Cement shares which lost -2.1 percent.
Similarly, another market gauge, the NSE market capitalisation decreased by N41.0billion to N12.9trillion. Accordingly, the Year-to-Date, YtD and Month-to-Date, MtD losses increased to 4.61 percent and 7.67 percent, respectively.
The Industrial Goods (-0.40 percent) Index was the sole loser, owing to profit-taking in Dangote Cement (-2.1 percent) shares.
On the flip side, the Insurance (+0.99 percent), Banking (+0.96 percent), Oil & Gas (+0.24 percent), and Consumer Goods (+0.24 percent) Indices posted positive returns, on the back of gains in the shares of Niger Insurance (+10.00 percent), Guaranty Trust Bank (+1.33 percent), Total Nigeria (+1.91 percent), and Flour Mills Nigeria (+9.77 percent), respectively.
Market breadth remained positive, with a wider margin of 26 gainers and 14 losers, led by Niger Insurance (+10.00 percent) and First Aluminium (-10.00 percent) respectively.
Total volume and value of trades dropped by 64.25 percent and 51.75 percent to 178.81 million units and N2.02 billion, exchanged in 2,981 deals.
The top traded stocks by volume were NAHCO (19.2million), Access Bank (16.8million), and Diamond Bank (13.2million), while Nestle Nigeria (N270.7million), Zenith Bank (N230.4million) and Beta Glass (N197.9million) were the top traded stocks by value.
Analysts at Lagos based investment firm, Cordros Capital said: “Our outlook for equities in the near to medium term remain conservative, in the absence of a near term one-off positive catalyst; and more so, amidst brewing political concerns. However, stable macroeconomic fundamentals remain supportive of recovery in the long term.”
Reacting to trading activity, analysts at Afrinvest Research said: “In subsequent sessions, we expect a positive performance as investors position in bellwethers with attractive entry prices.”