By Peter Egwuatu
Investors gained over N179.1 billion as the equities market on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, NSE consolidated its bullish run at the beginning of trading on Monday as All Share Index, ASI surged by 1.4 per cent to close at 27,339.68 points.
The positive market was buoyed by buying interest in highly capitalised companies such as Dangote Cement which garnered (+2.8 percent), Guaranty Trust Bank (+3.0 percent) and Zenith Bank (+3.9 percent) all culminated to pull the ASI up 138 bases points, bps to close at 27,339.68 points.
Consequently, market capitalisation, which represents market value rose ₦179.1billion to close at ₦13.2trillion. Activity level was mixed as volume traded fell by 14.5 percent to 520.4million units while value traded increased by 42.3 percent to ₦5.4billion.
The top traded stocks by volume were Zenith Bank (97.1millon units), Universal Insurance 70.0million units) and UBA (62.7million units), while Zenith Bank (₦1.9 billion), Seplat (₦670.0million) and Guaranty Trust Bank (₦586.4million) were the top, traded stocks by value.
Sectoral performance showed that all the sectors were bullish except the AFR-ICT which declined by (-0.5 percent) due to price weakness in MTN Nigeria (-0.1 percent).
The Banking index led gainers with a 3.9 percent gain consequent on buying interest in Guaranty Trust Bank (+3.0 percent ) and Zenith Bank (+3.9 percent). Trailing, the Industrial Goods Index up by (+1.6 percent) and Insurance Index (+0.8 percent) edged higher on the back of gains in Dangote Cement (+2.8 percent ) and WAPCO (+0.7 percent ) as well as LASACO Insurance (+8.0 percent ) and WAPIC Insurance (+2.9 percent ) respectively.
Similarly, price appreciation in Dangote Sugar (+6.0 percent ), FLOUR MILLS Nigeria (+6.3 percent ), OANDO (+4.1 percent ) and Conoil (+2.2 percent ) pushed the Consumer Goods and Oil & Gas Indices 0.5 percent and 0.4 percent higher respectively.
Meanwhile, investor sentiment as measured by market breadth strengthened as 30 stocks gained as opposed to 13 losers. The best performing stocks for the day were FCMB which surged by (+10.0 percent ), Cornerstone Insurance (+9.4 percent ) and Unity Bank (+9.0 percent ) while PZ (-9.7 percent ), UNION Diagnostic (-9.1 percent ) and Niger Insurance (-9.1percent) lost the most.
Reacting, analysts at Afrinvest Research, said: “Following the recent trend in the market, we expect the market to continue its gaining streak this week.”