By Omobayo Azeez
As Nigeria’s equities market struggled for liberation from perpetual negative sentiment, investors had the first positive close of the week on Wednesday gaining N7 billion.
This was propelled by investors’ interest in the shares of AIRTELAFRI, GUARANTY and ACCESS Bank Plc that posted 3.4 per cent, 0.9 per cent and 0.8 per cent gains respectively.
With the record, the All-Share Index (ASI) advanced by 0.1 per cent to end the session at 24,130.26 basis points, bringing Month-to-Date (MtD) and Year-to-Date (YtD) losses down to -1.4 per cent and -10.1 per cent in that order.
Across sector indices, the consumer goods and Insurance indices slid by -1.4 per cent and-0.9 per cent while the banking index gained 0.4 per cent, and industrial goods index, 0.01 per cent. The oil & gas index was flat.
While the total volume of trade was flat at 208.21 million units, traded value ballooned by 66.38 per cent to N1.762 billion and exchanged hands in 3,648 deals.
STERLNBANK was the most traded stock by volume at 77.19 million units while MTN Nigeria was the most traded stock by value at N296.09 million.
Market sentiment, as measured by market breadth, was negative, as 15 tickers declined, relative to 10 gainers.
The day’s statistics showed that Airtel Africa topped the gaining list wihr N11.30 to close at N340 per share, followed by Dangote Flour Plc, gaining N0.60 to close at N12.20 per share.
Other gainers include GUARANTEE, CUTIX and ACCESS that appreciated by N0.20, N0.13 and N0.05 to close the session at N21.50, N1.82 and N6.15 per share respectively.
On the flip side, Nigerian Breweries Plc shed N3.35 to close at 30.70 per share as the highest decliner of the day. Julius Berger followed the trend with N1.7 loss to close at N15.50 per share.
Meanwhile, Stanbic, PZ Cusson and Caverton also terminated Wednesday’s trading in the red territory with N1.25, N0.15 and N0.12 losses to close at N29, N4.35 and N1.83 per share respectively.