By Modupe Gbadeyanka
Market sentiments remained weak on Wednesday as pressure continued to mount on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
Stock market analysts believed news of an alleged attempt by the Senate to install the Senate President, Mr Bukola Saraki, as the Acting President yesterday sent a wrong signal to investors, who held back to observe latest political happenings in the country, especially with the absence of President Muhammadu Buhari in nearly two months now.
Nigerians have continued to react to the development, with many heavily criticising the upper legislative chamber of the National Assembly for the alleged attempt, which was quickly foiled by Mr Saraki on Tuesday.
At the resumption of trading activities on the floor of the NSE on Wednesday, the bearish trend was maintained, leaving the market to decline further by 0.33 percent.
The All-Share Index (ASI) depreciated today by 107.88 points to settle at 32,302.32 points, while the market capitalisation depleted by N36.7 billion to finish at N11.13 trillion.
Furthermore, the market breadth still remained negative today with 33 decliners in contrast to 12 advancers.
In addition, the year-to-date return trimmed further to 20.20 percent.
Business Post however reports that the volume and value of shares transacted at the market today finished higher.
A total of 312 million shares exchanged hands on Wednesday in 4,312 deals worth N3 billion, versus 206.2 shares traded yesterday in 4,294 deals valued at N1.7 billion.
Niger Insurance was the most active stock on Wednesday, trading a total of 62.9 million shares valued at N31.5 million.
First Bank followed with a total of 30.5 million units traded at N183.7 million, while Transcorp sold 30.2 million shares worth N38.8 million.
Zenith Bank exchanged a total of 28.5 million shares today valued at N575 million, and UBA transacted 24 million units worth N197.7 million.
On the price movement chart, Flour Mills led the losers’ table after dropping N2.49k to close at N23.14k per share, and was trailed by Unilever, which shed N1.84k to end at N35.3k per share.
Julius Berger lost N1.69k to finish at N32.14k per share, Guinness declined by N1.54k to settle at N63 per share, while PZ Cussons depreciated by N1.21k to close at N23.14k per share.
The gainers’ chart was led today by Nestle, which grew by 50k to finish at N901.50k per share, and was followed by Berger Paints, which advanced by 31k to end at N7.15k per share.
Nigerian Breweries added 30k to its share value on Wednesday to close at N158.35k per share, UBA gained 18k to settle at N8.38k per share, and First Bank increased by 14k to wrap the day at N6.5k per share.
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