The reign of the bears continued unabated on the equity sector of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), as more highly capitalised stocks depreciated in price, causing market capitalisation to decline further by N28billion.In summary, the ASI shed 75.68 absolute points, representing a decline of 0.18 per cent to close at 41,080.12 points.
Also, the market capitalisation declined by N28 billion to close at N14.880trillion.
The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are; Unilever Nigeria, Nigerian Breweries, Chemical Allied Products, Guaranty Trust Bank, and UAC of Nigeria.
Analysts at Afrinvest Limited, however argued that “Despite the softer sentiment in the market, we anticipate a rebound in the near term on the back of bargain hunting in bellwethers.”
Agreeing, analysts at Cordros Capital said: “despite extended weakness, strengthening macro-economic fundamentals as well as relatively softer prices of value stocks, indices continue to point to likelihood of gains on the bourse.”
The total volume traded depreciated by 39.5 per cent to 341.1 million shares worth N9.33billion, and traded in 3,790 deals.
Transactions in the shares of Guaranty Trust Bank topped the activity chart with 162.82 million shares valued at N7.4billion.
Fidelity Bank followed with 29.52 million shares worth N72.74million, while FBN Holdings traded 25.85 million shares valued at N310.9million.
UBA traded 15.45 million shares valued at N180.9million, while Zenith Bank transacted 13.78 million shares worth N378.48million
On the price movement chart, Unilever topped the losers’ chart with N2.60 kobo to close at N49.90 per share, while Nigeria Breweries followed with N1.80 to close at N125.20 per share. CAP lost N1.65 kobo to close at N37.10 per share.
Guaranty Trust Bank shed N0.65 kobo to close at N45.00 per share. UACN dropped N0.60 kobo to close at N17.40 per share.
On the other hand, Nestle led others on the gainers’ chart with N2.50 kobo per share while Cement Company of Northern Nigeria followed with N1.15 kobo to close at N24.60 per share.
Dangote Cement gained N1.00 per share. Guinness appreciated by N0.50 kobo to close at N104.00 per share. National Salt Company of Nigeria also added N0.50 kobo close at N21.00 per share.
By Helen Oji
The Guardian Newspaper May 10th, 2018