By Dipo Olowookere
It was an abysmal outing for stocks in Nigeria as investors are gradually retreating from the market, preferring to watch happenings from a safe distance.
At the market on Tuesday, equities depreciated by 0.36 per cent on the back of profit-taking, widening the year-to-date loss to 10.16 per cent at the close of transactions.
Consequently, the All-Share Index (ASI) of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) went down by 86.01 points to 24,114.59 points from 24,200.60 points, while the market capitalisation reduced by N45 billion to N12.580 trillion from N12.625 trillion.
The loss printed by the stock exchange yesterday as a result of waning investor confidence was influenced by the poor performance of 16 equities led by GTBank, which lost 70 kobo to settle at N21.30 per share.
Zenith Bank depreciated by 60 kobo to N15.60 per unit, GlaxoSmithKline fell by 45 kobo to N4.35 per share, Access Bank lost 20 kobo to close at N6.10 per share, while Africa Prudential went down by 18 kobo to N4.07 per unit.
Business Post reports that only eight stocks closed in the green territory on Tuesday and topping the chart was Unilever Nigeria, which gained N1.20 to close at N13.65 per unit.
BUA Cement appreciated by 25 kobo to quote at N41.45 per unit, Jaiz Bank grew by 2 kobo to finish at 56 kobo per share, Transcorp improved by 2 kobo to settle at 64 kobo per unit, while NEM Insurance appreciated by one kobo to end at N2.06 per share.
It was observed that the banking sector was responsible for the depression suffered by the market yesterday. Its index went down by 2.80 per cent due to heavy selloffs.
The oil/gas counter also came under pressure on Tuesday, forcing it to lose 0.58 per cent at the close of transactions.
However, the consumer goods index grew by 0.44 per cent, followed by the industrial goods sector, which appreciated by 0.25 per cent, and the insurance counter, which gained 0.14 per cent.
The market was a bit quiet yesterday, resulting into a low level of activity, which caused the trading volume and value to decline by 9.96 per cent and 50.86 per cent respectively, while the number of deals increased by 5.67 per cent.
A total of 208.2 million stocks worth N1.1 billion exchanged hands in 4,174 deals yesterday as against the 231.2 million equities worth N2.2 billion traded in 3,950 deals at the last session.
Sterling Bank further ended the trading day as the most active, transacting 78.9 million shares valued at N98.7 million.
UBA exchanged 15.8 million units worth N96.0 million, Japaul Oil sold 12.8 million stocks for N3.2 million, FBN Holdings traded 10.9 million equities valued at N56.0 million, while Zenith Bank transacted 10.7 million shares for N167.1 million.
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