Sell pressure, arising from profit taking in the shares of some highly capitalised stocks, especially Seplat and Total Nigeria pulled the index further by 0.3 per cent.
Yesterday, the All Share Index (ASI) decreased by 89.08 absolute points, representing a decline of 0.32 per cent to close at 27,602.77 points. Similarly, the market capitalisation lost N44 billion, and closed at N13.428 trillion. The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, among which are: Seplat Petroleum Development Company (Seplat), Total Nigeria, Dangote Cement, Guaranty Trust Bank and International Breweries. Analysts at Afrinvest Limited predicted gloomy outlook, even as investor sentiment remains weak. “We expect the bearish performance to continue as investor sentiment remains weak.” Analysts at Investdata Consulting Limited said: “We expect a mixed performance to continue in the midst of profit-taking at a time of prevailing low liquidity, oscillating oil price, even as Investdata sees the likelihood of a slowdown in the Nigeria’s expected Q2 GDP data.
“Speculators are nevertheless taking advantage of the seeming improvement in some other economic indices released recently, as well as corporate earnings showing the true position of Nigeria’s listed companies.” Market breadth was negative, with 13 gainers versus 23 losers. PZ Cussons Nigeria recorded the highest price gain of 5.93 per cent, to close at N6.25, while Courteville Business Solutions followed with a gain of five per cent to close at 21 kobo, per share. Cement Company Northern Nigeria and Chams went up by 3.57 per cent each to close at N14.50 and 29 kobo, respectively, while Wema Bank appreciated by 3.45 per cent to close at 60 kobo, per share. On the other hand, Seplat led the losers’ chart by 9.82 per cent, each to close at N397.70, per share. Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals followed with a decline of 9.62 per cent to close at 47 kobo. NPF Micro Finance Bank lost 9.52 per cent to close at N1.14, per share. Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI) depreciated by 9.15 per cent each to close at N6.95 per share.
Sovereign Trust Insurance and Trans Nationwide Express declined by 9.09 per cent each to close at 20 kobo and 70 kobo, respectively, per share. However, total volume traded depreciated by 16 per cent to 183.65 million shares, worth N4.50 billion, and traded in 3,558 deals. Transactions in the shares of Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) topped the activity chart with 29.67 million shares valued at N31.70 million. Guaranty Trust Bank followed with 25.17 million shares worth N692.25 million, while Access Bank traded 19.20 million shares valued at N128.52 million. MTN Nigeria traded 17.02 million shares valued at N2.35 billion, while FBN Holdings sold 15.63 million shares worth N78.05 million.