By Nkiruka Nnorom
The equities market witnessed bearish sentiments last week following pressure from profit taking in some stocks.
Having gained in one of five trading sessions during week, the benchmark All Share Index (ASI) closed 2.18 per cent lower, eroding all the gains from the previous week.
Consequently, investors lost N635 billion as the market capitalisation of the listed equities fell to N28.523 trillion from N29.158 trillion, representing 2.17 per cent decline.
Also the ASI dropped by 2.18 per cent to 52,90824 points following profit taking witnessed in the shares of Okomu Oil Palm Plc (-10.0%), Presco Plc (-10.0%), Nigerian Breweries Plc (-8.1%), Dangote Cement Plc (-6.73), Lafarge Africa Plc (-4.1%), and MTN Communication Nigeria Plc (-3.0%).
Consequently, the year-to-date (YTD) return settled lower at +23.86 per cent.
Meanwhile, market activity rose as volume and value increased by 1,458 per cent and 685 per cent to 28.67 billion units and N213.3 billion respectively. Deals for the week under review closed at 28,567 as against 27,273 recorded for
Sectoral performance was negative as losses in the insurance (-5.5%), industrial goods (-3.7%), consumer goods (-2.5%), banking (-0.7%), and oil and gas (-0.4%) sectors reflected the overall negative sentiments in the market.
In their projections for the week, analysts at Cordros Capital said: “We believe a “choppy theme” will be the overarching theme in the local bourse as investors continue to pay close attention to the direction of yields in the fixed income market.
“Following the moderation in the share prices of bellwether stocks, we see scope for the bulls to make a re-entry in stocks with attractive dividend yields.”
Speaking in the same vein, analysts at Cowry Asset Management said: “In the new week, we expect to see a mixed reaction to the daily change of the local bourse.
“This, we believe, will be as a result of no upcoming company’s financial release for the new week.”