By Nkiruka Nnorom
The bullish run in the stock market occasioned by the release of the first quarter (Q1) 2022 financial results continued last week, resulting in N699 billion gains to investors.
As a result of the bulls rampage, the benchmark All Share Index (ASI) of the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) crossed the 50,000 basis points marks to close at 50.935.03 points, the highest level since March 2008.
This represented a 2.6 per cent increase compared to its 49,638.94 points opening figure.
Similarly, the market capitalisation of all listed equities rose by 2.6 per cent to close at N27.460 trillion from N26.861 trillion in the previous week.
The positive momentum was driven in part by sustained bargain hunting activities in blue-chip stocks.
Breakdown of the week’s trading activities showed that the market traded positively in all three trading sessions in the holiday shortened week.
Specifically, investors’ demand for big cap stocks including, Presco Oil Plc (+18.6%), Guinness Nigeria Plc (+18.3%), Nigetian Breweries (+22.7%), Okomu Oil Palm Plc (+15.7%), BUA Cement (+8.2%) and MTN Nigeria Communication Plc (+6.1%) drove the benchmark index higher.
Consequently, the Month-to-Date (MTD) and Year-to-Date (YTD) returns increased to 2.6 per cent and +19.2 per cent, respectively. However, activity levels were weaker than in the prior week as volume and value traded decreased by 24.6 per cent and 16.9 per cent respectively.
Sectoral performance was broadly positive, as the consumer goods (+7.3%), industrial goods (+3.2%), and the Banyking (+0.6%) sectors advanced, while the insurance (-2.0%) and oil and gas (-1.1%) sectors closed in the red.
Meanwhile, investment analysts at Cordros Capital have said that the market would record a subdued performance this week given that the Q1’22 earning season has run its full course.
They said: “Given that the Q1’22 earnings season has run its course and the upward repricing of cyclical stocks that ensued, we expect a subdued market performance in the week ahead.
“The bears will likely dominate the market performance, as investors cash out on the gains across bellwether stocks over the past two weeks.”
Also, analysts at Parthian Securities, said: “Given the positive run observed in the last few weeks, we envisage that investors might start to take profit during the early part of next week. However, we expect bargain hunting activities to pick up towards the end of the week.”