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Stock market reopens bearish as index plunges by 0.26 per cent

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The Nigerian equities market reopened on a downturn yesterday, occasioned by price losses in most bluechip stocks, causing the All Share Index (ASI) to plummet by 0.26 percent. At the close of transactions Monday, the ASI fell by 75.85 points or 0.26 per cent to 29,552.99 points.   
 
Accordingly, investors lost N39 billion in value as market capitalisation fell to N15.223 trillion.The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large value stocks, amongst which were; Unilever Nigeria, Julius Berger, Zenith Bank, Eterna, and FBN Holdings.
   
Analysts at Afrinvest Limited, said: “We anticipate a positive trading week but we could see pockets of profit-taking activities in some sessions.”

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Also, analysts at United Capital Plc, said: “This week, we expect reactions to the gradual publication of unaudited earnings report to drive performance.
 
“However, the recent decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to increase Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) for banks to 27.5 per cent is a downside risk.”
 
Market breadth closed slight positive, with 14 gainers versus 13 losers. Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) recorded the highest price gain of 9.80 percent to close at N2.69 per share.NPF Micro Financial Bank followed with 9.73 percent to close at N1.24, and Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals 8.51 percent to close at 51 kobo, per share.
   
Linkage Assurance rose 8.33 percent to close at 52 kobo, while Vitafoam Nigeria earned six percent to close at N5.30, per share. On the other hand, Unilever Nigeria led the losers’ chart by 9.97 percent to close at N15.80 per share. Eterna followed with 9.52 percent to close at N2.85 per share.
   
Royal Exchange fell 9.09 to close at 30 kobo per share. Julius Berger lost 6.28 percent to close at N20.15, and Sterling Bank shed 5.15 percent to close at N1.84, per share.
 
However, the total volume traded rose by 140.59 percent to 444.038 million shares worth N3.35 billion, traded in 4,306 deals.Transactions in the shares of Veritas Kapital Assurance topped the activity chart with 226.56 million shares valued at N45.31 million. Zenith Bank followed with 45.45 million shares worth N988.96 million.
 
Guaranty Trust Bank traded 26.67 million shares at N856.17 million.United Bank for Africa (UBA) traded 17.36 million shares valued at N146.497 million, and FCMB Groups transacted 16.86 million shares worth N33.02 million.
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