The Nigerian bourse extended gains to the sixth trading session Thursday as the benchmark index advanced 0.8% to close at 33,246.91 points, buoying year-to-date gain to 23.7 percent.
The trading performance was bolstered by sustained buying interest in bellwethers across sectors including DANGCEM (+0.8%), GUARANTY (+1.9%), WAPCO (+4.0%) and MOBIL (+9.5%), which more than offset losses in other heavyweights like NIGERIAN BREWERIES (-0.9%) and ACCESS (-1.5%).
Thus, investors accumulated N91.4 billion in value as market capitalization increased to N11.5 trillion. Activity level also improved as volume and value traded rose 60.2 percent and 48.0 percent to 288.9 million units and N3.8 billion respectively.
Performance across sectors was largely positive as all indices advanced save for the consumer goods index which slid by a marginal one basis point due to selloffs in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (-0.9%) and CHAMPION (-7.0%).
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The oil & gas index led sector gainers, up 2.8 percent on the back of upticks in MOBIL (+9.5%) and FORTE (+7.0%) while the industrial goods index trailed closely with a gain of 2.0 percent on account of appreciation in DANGCEM (+0.8%) and WAPCO (+4.0%).
Similarly, the banking and insurance goods indices trended 0.8 percent and 0.2 percent northward as a result of positive sentiment towards GUARANTY (+1.9%) and CUSTODYINS (+5.0%) respectively.
Market breadth, a measure of investor sentiment, declined to 1.8x (from 1.9x recorded Wednesday) as 33 stocks advanced while 18 stocks declined. At the top of the gainers’ chart were MOBIL (+9.5%), FORTE (+7.0%) and CUSTODYINS (+5.0%) while CHAMPION (-7.0%), FIRSTALUM (-5.0%) and NCR (-4.9%) topped the losers’ chart.
As 2017 half-year earnings scorecards begin to trickle in, analysts are confident that performance in the market would improve.
“We expect performance in the equities market to remain upbeat as investors take positions in stocks with positive forward earnings expectation. Nevertheless, we do not eliminate the possibility of some ‘end of the week’ profit taking in tomorrow’s trading session following the positive streak,” analysts at Afrinvest project.