After three consecutive positive trading sessions that left equities with N659 billion net capital gain last week, investors returned to the Nigerian stock market on Monday with considerable bids to monetise the capital gains.
The sell pressure resulting from the profit-taking bids overturned the market performance, leaving equities with a net loss of N14 billion in the first trading session of the week.
With 30 decliners to 20 advancers, aggregate market value of all quoted equities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) dropped from its opening value of N11.504 trillion to close at N11.490 trillion, representing a loss of N14 billion. The All Share Index (ASI)-the common value-based index that tracks prices at the Exchange, depreciated by 0.12 per cent from its opening index of 33,276.68 points to close at 33,235.28 points. With this, average year-to-date return now stands at 23.7 per cent.
The market however continued to show strong underlying bargain-hunting with most tracked sectoral indices closing on the upside. The NSE Insurance Index led the upside with a gain of 1.1 per cent. The NSE Banking Index rose by 0.5 per cent while the NSE Industrial Goods Index appreciated by 0.1 per cent. On the downside, the NSE Oil & Gas Index and the NSE Consumer Goods Index lost 1.1 per cent apiece.
Several stocks that had led the rally in recent period topped the profit-taking list. Nestle Nigeria, the highest-priced stock at the Exchange, led the decliners with a loss of N40 to close at N924. Total Nigeria followed with a loss of N11 to close at N271. Seven-Up Bottling Company dropped by N4.54 to close at N90. International Breweries declined by N2.78 to close at N29.45. Seplat Petroleum Development Company lost N2.17 to close at N466.39. UAC of Nigeria depreciated by N1.08 to close at N17.40. Beta Glass dropped by 98 kobo to close at N54.91. Flour Mills of Nigeria lost 60 kobo to close at N27. FBN Holdings dropped by 25 kobo to close at N6.75 while Oando lost 22 kobo to close at N8.15 per share.
The momentum of activities started the week on the average with investors exchanging a total of 501.1 million shares worth N6.1billion. Access Bank was the most active stock with a turnover of N65.36 million shares worth N705.3 million. FCMB Group followed with 60.38 million shares valued at N85.87 million while Guaranty Trust Bank ranked third with 58.68 million shares worth N1.97 billion.
On the positive side, Okomu Oil Palm led the gainers with a gain of N3.03 to close at N63.66. PZ Cussons Nigeria followed with a gain of N2.05 to close at N24. Ashaka Cement appreciated by N1.17 to close at N12.77. Nigerian Breweries, the second most capitalised stock at the Exchange, rose by N1.01 to close at N157.01.
Stanbic IBTC Holdings appreciated by 49 kobo to close at N29.49. Dangote Cement and Access Bank chalked up 36 kobo each to close at N205.36 and N10.76 respectively. Cement Company of Northern Nigeria rallied 33 kobo to close at N6.95. May & Baker Nigeria added 28 kobo to close at N3.12 while Guaranty Trust Bank rose by 20 kobo to close at N33.70.
Analysts at Afrinvest Securities-a Lagos-based dealer at the Exchange, noted that while Monday’s performance was “mainly dragged by profit-taking in some stocks that had appreciated in the previous week, we do not expect the downtrend to persist beyond the short term as positive developments in the economy continue to bolster investors’ appetite for equities”.