Friday, February 8, 2013

Bourse rebounds on foreign inflow as ASPI records biggest advance in two weeks

The Colombo stock market yesterday bounced back amidst strong across-the-board participation focused primarily on banking and diversified sectors as the benchmark index peaked at 5,825.4 (+45 points), before losing some ground amidst retail profit taking.

 The index closed with a 30.3 point advance, the biggest gain in two weeks, whilst the S&P SL20 also secured a 26.3 point gain to close at 3,243.7 points. Foreign net inflow amounted to Rs. 162 million.

Softlogic Stockbrokers said the banking and telco sector play led the gains of the benchmark index, with notable positive contributions stemming from Sampath Bank (+4.9%), Lanka Orix Leasing (+3.7%), Commercial Bank (+1.1%), and Dialog Axiata (+1.1%). The turnover was lifted to Rs. 1.5 billion supported by 14 crossings recorded during the day constituting 52% of turnover.

 Hatton National Bank continued to witness large off-market deals amidst heavy foreign investor participation in the counter. It saw five crossings in the counter accumulated to 1.9 million shares each traded at a set price of Rs. 144. The counter spearheaded the day’s turnover as it advanced a marginal 0.7% to close at Rs. 146.

 Following substantial foreign accumulation in Sampath Bank, the counter continued to witness heavy investor interest as it proceeded to register further two off-market blocks totalling 500,000 shares at Rs. 239.0 (+5.8% premium to Wednesday’s close). The counter recorded several large on-board deals as well as it renewed its 52-week high at Rs. 237.0 (+4.9%), where it closed at a similar price.

 Another banking heavyweight, Commercial Bank of Ceylon proved to be active amidst considerable on-board deals including a 940,000 share parcel at Rs. 109.1. Further buying interest was notable in National Development Bank and Nations Trust Bank as well, with each advancing 2.6% and 1.7% to close at Rs. 148.9 and Rs. 60 respectively.

 Diversified sector play continued to be highlighted in John Keells Holdings and Aitken Spence. The former recorded four crossings at prices Rs. 228.5 and Rs. 229.6. Sizeable on-board deals were also recorded in both the counters where the latter advanced marginal 0.4% at its close of Rs. 124.5.

 Interest continued in Chevron Lubricants as the counter saw a block of 500,000 shares taken at Rs. 221, whilst two parcels carrying 1.4 million shares were crossed off in Lanka Orix Leasing at Rs. 69 each.

 Softlogic said despite on thin volumes, buying interest was also visible in Ceylon Cold Stores, Carson Cumberbatch, Royal Ceramics, and Nestle Lanka. Meanwhile following the attractive earnings release, Dipped Products saw its price shot up to touch a 52-week high of Rs. 114 as it closed with a 5.9% advance at Rs. 112.2.

 Retail play remained subdued with some interest being witnessed in People’s Merchant Finance, Environmental Resources Investment, E-Channelling, Vallibel One, and Nations Lanka Finance.

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