By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The early gains recorded by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Wednesday evaporated towards the closing period of the market.
The market was looking to sustain the growth it posted yesterday, but selloffs in some large-cap stocks dragged the index to the negative region.
At the close of transactions, the equities market closed 0.44 percent lower, shrinking the year-to-date returns further to -7.54 percent.
Business Post reports that the All-Share Index (ASI) reduced today by 157.27 absolute points to settle at 35,358.94 points, while the market capitalisation decreased by N57 billion to finish at N12.909 trillion.
Profit taking activity was witnessed at the stock market during the midweek trade, leaving the market breadth negative with 27 price losers against 18 price gainers.
Flour Mills led the losers’ table at the close of transactions today, losing N1.75k to settle at N23.05k per share.
It was followed by Lafarge, which crashed by N1.50k to end at N25.50k per share, and Unilever, which went down by N1 to close at N50 per share.
Dangote Cement also decreased by N1 to close at N229 per share, while FBN Holdings lost 70 kobo to end at N9 per share.
At the other side, Total Nigeria continued its upward trend, leading the gainers’ chart again today after adding N2 to its share value to close at N192 per share.
PZ Cussons increased by N1 to finish at N15 per share, while Ecobank went up by 75 kobo to settle at N20.05k per share.
Dangote Sugar rose by 50 kobo to end at N16 per share, while Custodian Investment improved by 35 kobo to finish at N5.45k per share.
While the volume of shares traded by investors appreciated by 1.58 percent on Wednesday, the value went down by 58.80 percent.
A total of 345.1 million shares worth N2.3 billion were transacted in 3,261 deals today compared with the 339.8 million equities valued at N5.5 billion traded yesterday.
NEM Insurance emerged the most traded stock at the market on Wednesday, accounting for 180.1 million units worth N540.1 million.
UBA sold 27.2 million equities valued at N221.5 million, while Transcorp exchanged 21.8 million shares for N27.4 million.
Ecobank traded 19.2 million equities valued at N383.1 million, while investors bought and sold 11.6 million shares of FCMB worth N22 million.
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