With a year to date return of 112 percent, Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN), the top-performing stock on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Tuesday emerged the lead gainer at the close of trading activities.
The stock has outperformed the market as well as other peers on indications of merger plans with BUA cement subsidiary, Kalambaina.
Demand for the stock remains high with limited supply as 227,719 units exchanged hands in 27 deals amounting to a total value of N4.5 million. The stock thus appreciated 9.8 percent in the course of trading activities to settle at N20.15.
Gains in the stock also impacted on the industrial index of the NSE which grew by 0.4 percent.
Other top gainers for the day include Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO), which appreciated 5.3 percent to close at N3.58 per share and Dangote Sugar, which gained 4.3 percent to close at N13.45 per share.
The overall performance of the Nigerian equities market consequently reversed losses recorded in previous sessions and closed 0.33 percent higher as the NSE All Share Index settled at 32,154.03 points.
The positive performance of the market also benefited from bargain hunting in big cap stocks such as Nigerian Breweries which gained 1.3 percent, Nestle which added 3.6 percent and UBA which appreciated 4.0 percent.
Market capitalization similarly posted an increase of N38.6 billion to N11.7 trillion as year to date losses moderated to -15.9 percent.
Trading activities nevertheless ended with 14 gainers as against 23 decliners. The decliners were led by Mutual Benefit, Fidson Health Care and UAC Prop with their share prices all closing 10 percent lower.
Activity chart from the NSE indicated that trading was mixed as volume traded fell 5.0 percent to 149.7 million units while value traded appreciated 59.6 percent to N2.8 billion.
The day’s most traded stocks in volume terms were Fidelity Bank, Regal Insurance and Guaranty Trust Bank which sold 22 million units, 19.4 million units and 11.8 million units of shares respectively.
In terms of value traded, Nestle Nigeria, Guaranty Trust Bank and Seplat topped the chart, gathering N723.8 million, N447.1 million and N344.3 million respectively.
Sectoral performance analysis showed market was largely bearish as three of the five major indices closed red. The insurance index depreciated the most, down 1.1 percent, following sell-offs in NEM Insurance and Mutual Benefit which depreciated the stocks by 4.4 percent and 10 percent respectively.
Similarly, the banking and the oil and gas indices shed 0.5 percent and 0.1 percent respectively, on sell pressures in Guaranty Trust Bank, Access Bank, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated and Oando.
These stocks depreciated 1.8 percent, 1.3 percent , 0.3 percent, 1.0 percent respectively.
The consumer goods index joined the industrial index of the NSE as sectors that appreciated Tuesday. A 3.6 percent and 1.3 percent appreciation in the stocks of Nestle and Nigerian Breweries moved the consumer goods index northward by 1.8 percent.
Expectations for Wednesday include buying interests in some under-priced stocks, but market analysts advise caution as they maintain a near-term bearish outlook despite the rally recorded Tuesday.