By Dipo Olowookere
The bears made a return to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Thursday, thanks to the profit taking witnessed in the financial services sector.
The bourse depreciated during yesterday’s session by 0.05 percent despite an improvement in the activity level. The volume of transactions increased in the day by 84.03 percent to 150.7 million units from 81.9 million units, while the value of trades rose by 162.68 percent to N2.8 billion from N1.1 billion, with the number of deals rising by 32.48 percent to 3,198 from 2,414.
However, it was the poor outing of stocks in the insurance and banking sectors that led the market to the bears on Thursday. The insurance counter depreciated by 1.11 percent, while the banking space fell by 0.25 percent, with the consumer goods index marginally down by 0.01 percent.
The industrial goods index, which was the only gainer, appreciated by 0.79 percent, while the energy sector closed flat for the second day running.
The market breadth finished negative on Thursday with 15 price losers and 13 price gainers. MTN Nigeria led the decliners’ log with a N4 loss to settle at N116 per share.
NEM Insurance went down by 16 kobo to close at N2.04 per unit, UAC Nigeria fell by 15 kobo to end at N9.35 per share, Law Union and Rock Insurance declined by 12 kobo to trade at N1.10 per unit, while Zenith Bank crashed by 5 kobo to sell at N19.90 per unit.
Conversely, GTBank led the gainers’ table after adding N1.85 to its share price to trade at N30.85 per unit, while BUA Cement followed with a price appreciation of 50 kobo to quote at N35.80 per unit.
Flour Mills also rose by 50 kobo to close at N23 per share, United Capital appreciated by 26 kobo to trade at N2.86 per unit, while Learn Africa added 11 kobo to its share price to end at N1.24 per share.
It was observed that Zenith Bank and Flour Mills dominated yesterday’s trading session, selling 25.4 million shares worth N502.4 million and 25.1 million shares worth N574.5 million respectively.
United Capital transacted 21.8 million units valued at N59.0 million, UBA exchanged 10.9 million equities for N84.5 million, while MTN Nigeria traded 6.9 million stocks for N792.6 million.
Business Post reports that at the close of transactions on Thursday, the market capitalisation reduced by N7 billion to settle at N14.513 trillion in contrast to N14.520 trillion it ended the previous day, while the All-Share Index (ASI) went down by 13.59 points to 27,864.84 points from 27,878.43 points.
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