By Peter Egwuatu
The Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE All Share Index, ASI traded lower in today’s session, dropping 14 bases points, bps or 0.14 percent to close at 26,188.24 points.
The Index which traded within the band of 0.05 percent and -0.07 percent as at mid-day was negatively affected by late sell offs in Unilever Nigeria Plc which dropped by -998bps followed by STANBIC IBTC dropping by -212 bps. Zenith Bank dipped by -202 bps and First Bank Nigeria Holding FBNH nosedived by -92bps.
On the other hand, volume and value traded continued to move in opposite directions with total volume traded rising significantly by 212.89% while value traded dropped marginally by 4.91%, as small capitalised stocks with over 500 million units of Jaiz Bank shares were crossed.
Sectoral performance showed that activity was mixed as one sector gained while two lost and three were closed flat. The Banking Index was the lone gainer, up 0.7 percent due to buying interest in Guaranty Trust Bank which gained 2.9 percent, followed by Access Bank 0.6 percent and UBA 0.8 percent .
Conversely, the Consumer Goods Index led losers, declining 1.1 percent on the back of sell-offs in Unilever, Dangote Sugar and Cadbury Nigeria .
The Insurance Index also lost three bps due to price weakness in CHI Plc which declined by -4.9 percent and LASACO Insurance -3.7 percent. The Industrial Goods and Oil & Gas Indices all closed flat in today’s session.
Meanwhile, investor sentiment as measured by market breadth declined as a total of 10 stocks gained, as against while 16 that declined.