A day after halting its nine-day rally, Nigerian equities on Wednesday regained the uptrend as leading stocks in the manufacturing and oil and gas sectors rallied to counter seemingly expanding profit-taking trend. The stock market had suffered its first decline in 10 trading days on Tuesday as profit-taking transactions shaved off N179 billion.
Leading stocks such as Dangote Cement, Guaranty Trust Bank, Forte Oil and Flour Mills of Nigeria however counterbalanced the continuing underlining profit-taking trend, propping the overall market position to average day-on-day gain of 1.51 per cent, equivalent to net capital gain of N168 billion on Wednesday.
The All Share Index (ASI)-the value-based common index that tracks prices at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), rose from opening index of 32,200.38 points to close at 32,686.72 points. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities rose correspondingly from the opening value of N11.132 trillion to close at N11.300 trillion. With this, the average year-to-date return appreciated to 21.63 per cent.
Sectoral indices showed mixed performance, reflecting the tough market situation between profit-taking and bargain-hunting. The NSE Oil & Gas Index rallied a gain of 3.0 per cent. The NSE Industrial Goods Index appreciated by 2.0 per cent while the NSE Consumer Goods Index inched up 0.6 per cent. On the other hand, the NSE Insurance Index declined by 1.4 per cent while the NSE Banking Index dipped by 0.6 per cent.
There were 27 decliners against 26 advancers. Seplat Petroleum Development Company led the gainers with a gain of N18.37 to close at N385.87. Dangote Cement followed with a gain of N9.47 to close at N208.97. Total Nigeria rose by N5.01 to close at N275.01. Forte Oil added N4.90 to close at N52.92. International Breweries chalked up N2.46 to close at N26.53. Seven-Up Bottling Company rose by N2.42 to close at N94.54. Flour Mills of Nigeria added N1.28 to close at N28. UAC of Nigeria rose by N1.08 to close at N16.83. Stanbic IBTC Holdings gathered N1 to close at N29 while Cadbury Nigeria rallied a gain of 91 kobo to close at N12.91 per share.
On the negative side, Mobil Oil Nigeria led the decliners with a loss of N1.56 to close at N287. Nestle Nigeria followed with a loss of N1 to close at N964. Nigerian Breweries declined by 99 kobo to close at N155.01. FBN Holdings lost 65 kobo to close at N6.40. Union Bank of Nigeria and Guaranty Trust Bank dropped by 30 kobo each to close at N5.78 and N33.70 respectively. Lafarge Africa depreciated by 25 kobo to close at N52.75. Zenith Bank dropped by 16 kobo to close at N19.99 while UACN Property Development Company lost 14 kobo to close at N2.71 per share.
The momentum of activities slowed down slightly with the exchange of 499.1 million shares valued at N4.07 billion in 6,424 deals. FBN Holdings was the most active with 99.81 million shares worth N639.35 million. United Bank for Africa followed with 62.18 million shares valued at N525.98 million while Diamond Bank placed third with 58.08 million shares valued at N73.26 million.
“While the equities market is expected to outperform in the near term due to positive macroeconomic developments that have buoyed confidence, we note that the sustained moderation in market breadth suggests investors are booking profit. Hence, momentum of gains might slow in subsequent sessions,” Afrinvest Securities stated.