Bellwethers Push Stock Market Index by 1.74 Percent

Trading on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), reopened in an upbeat yesterday, following price gains in many bellwether stocks, as the All -share index rose by 1.74 per cent.

Specifically, at the close of trading Monday, the All-Share Index (ASI) gained 501.47 absolute points, representing a growth of 1.74 per cent to close at 29,373.40 points. Similarly, the market capitalisation gained N221 billion to close at N12.938 trillion.

The upturn was significantly impacted by value appreciation recorded in some medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are; MTN Nigeria, Dangote Cement, Guinness Nigeria, Dangote Flour Mills, and NEM Insurance.

Analysts at APT Securities and Funds Limited, said: “MTNN listing on the premium board of the Exchange is a welcoming one, as the Africa’s leading cellular telecommunications company adds N1.80 trillion to the market capitalisation. We expect more positive reaction especially from local investors.”

Also, United Capital Plc expressed optimism  that the listing of MTNN shares on the Exchange would keep sentiments upbeat as investors continue to scramble to get a piece of the telco.

However, market breadth was negative, with 17 gainers versus 20 losers.

McNichols recorded the highest price gain of 10 per cent to close at 50 kobo per share. MTN Nigeria followed with a gain of 9.96 per cent to close at N108.90, while Thomas Wyatt Nigeria, appreciated by 9.68 per cent to close at 34 kobo, per. Share.

Livestock Feeds rose by 9.38 per cent to close at 64 kobo, while Linkage Assurance gained 9.09 per cent to close at 48 kobo, per share.

On the other hand, Forte Oil led the losers’ chart with 9.88 per cent to close at N25.55, per share. eTranzact International followed with 9.85 per cent to close at N2.38 per share.

Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals fell 8.20 per cent to close at 56 kobo per share, and Sterling Bank was down eight per cent to close at N2.30, while Access Bank lost 5.43 per cent to close at N6.10, per share.

Total volume traded also dropped by 19.94 per cent to 214.42 million shares worth N7.93 billion, and traded in 4,644 deals.

Transactions in the shares of MTN Nigeria topped the activity chart 51.4 million shares worth N6.16 billion.

FBN Holdings followed with 17.46 million shares valued at N122.25 million, while United Bank for Africa (UBA) traded 17.2 million shares at N103.19 million.

Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) traded 15.79 million shares valued at N49.92 million, while Guaranty Trust Bank sold 15.25 million shares worth N464.49 million.

By Helen Oji

The Guardian Newspaper May 21st, 2019

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