Stock market advances on sustained bargain hunting

The bulls maintained their grip on the market activities as bargain hunters jostled for shares of blue chip companies. Investors are currently taking advantage of the fact that most of the stock prices are attractive at the present low level. The key market performance measures, the NSE All Share Index and market capitalization, rose by 0.19 per cent as market sentiments extended gaining streaks following investors’ sustained optimism.

Consequently, the All-Share Index gained 50.01 basis points or 0.19 per cent to close at 26,166.80 as against 26.116.79 recorded the previous day while the market capitalisation of equities appreciated by N18 billion or 0.19 per cent to close at N9.045 trillion from N9.027 trillion.

Meanwhile, a turnover of 255.6 million shares exchanged in 5,106 deals was recorded in the day’s trading. Banking services sub-sector of the financial services segment was the most active (measured by turnover volume) with 88.2 million shares exchanged by investors in 1.823 deals.

Volume in the sub-sector was largely driven by activities in the shares of UBA Plc and GTB Plc. Premium sub-sector boosted by activities in the shares of Zenith Bank Plc and FBNH Plc followed with a turnover of 84.3 million shares in 970 deals.

The number of gainers at the close of trading session was 26, while decliners closed at 16. International Breweries Plc led the gainers’ table with 9.30 per cent to close at N19.50 per share while Fidson Healthcare Plc followed with a gain of 9.09 per cent to close at N1.44 per share.

Nacho Plc added 4.80 per cent to close at N2.62 per share. On the other hand, Stanbic IBTC Plc led the price losers’ table, dropping 9.62 per cent to close at N24.81 per share. Unity Bank Plc trailed with 7.41 per cent to close at 50 kobo per share, while Jaiz Bank Plc followed with a loss of 4.55 per cent to close at N1.05 per share.