- Sell pressures in MTN, Zenith and GTBank drove the market performance on Wednesday
- Investors lost N143.7bn, NSE30 down 1.09%
The bears found their voice on the Nigerian equities market midweek to halt a gaining streak that lasted all of 12 days with the All-Share index posting a 0.95 percent loss on this trading day.
It was a trading day characterised by what analysts called choppy trading sessions as speculators booked profits.
Profit-taking activities dominated the market, as the All-Share index inched lower by 95 basis points to 28,634.35 points. Sell pressures in bellwethers such as MTN Nigeria (-1.5%), Zenith Bank (-6.0%) and Guaranty Trust Bank (-1.6%) were the key drivers of Wednesday‘s performance. Investors lost N143.7 billion as market capitalisation declined to N15 trillion while the year to date (YTD) return weakened to 6.7 per cent.
Weak sector performance
Meanwhile, market performance across sectors was weak as five of six indices covered closed south. The oil & gas index was the lone gainer as sustained bargain hunting in OANDO (+2.6%) and ARDOVA (+0.4%), lifted the index by 0.2 per cent. However, the banking and insurance indices depreciated the most, down 3.3 per cent and 2.0 per cent respectively, following profit-taking in Zenith Bank (-6.0%), Guaranty Trust Bank (-1.5%) and Cornerstone Insurance (-9.1%).
Similarly, profit-taking in MTN Nigeria (-1.5%), Wapco Plc (-4.3%) and Dangote Cement (-0.1%), dragged the AFR-ICT and industrial goods indices lower by 0.8 per cent and 0.3 per cent respectively; while the consumer goods index declined marginally by 0.1 per cent, induced by sell pressures in Unilever Plc (-9.9%), Dangote Sugar (-2.9%) and Guinness Plc (-5.7%)
Investor sentiment weakened
Furthermore, investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) fell to 0.7x from the 5.6x recorded in the previous session as 21 stocks gained against 31 decliners. Berger Plc (+9.8%), Linkage Assurance (+9.8%) and Nascon (+9.6%) were top gainers, while Unilever Plc (-9.9%), Cornerstone Insurance (-9.1%) and Ecobank (-8.9%) led the laggards.
The NSE 30
The NSE 30 Index decreased by 1.09 per cent to close at 1,229.89 points as against 1,243.50 points as on the previous day. Market turnover closed with a traded volume of 661.43 million units. Nascon and International Breweries were the key gainers, while Unilever and Ecobank were the key losers.