The Nigerian equities market Wednesday extended its rally to the fifth consecutive session with the bourse’s benchmark index rising 0.5 percent to settle at 32,981.63 points, thus nudging YTD gain to 22.7 percent.
Wednesday’s performance was largely buoyed by interest in market heavyweights – GUARANTY (+1.9%), NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+0.6%) and DANGCEM (+0.1%). Consequently, stock prices gained N52.9 million as market capitalization increased to N11.4 billion.
However, activity level was mixed as volume traded declined 17.6 percent to 180.3 million units while value traded rose 22.7 percent to N2.6 billion.
Performance across sectors was positive as all indices closed in the green. The banking index advanced the most, up 1.3 percent due to sustained buy interest in GUARANTY (+1.9%) and ETI (+5.0%) while upticks in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+0.6%) and 7UP (+8.8%) drove the consumer goods index up 0.5 percent.
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Similarly, the insurance and industrial goods indices rose 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent on the back of gains in NEM (+4.9%) and DANGCEM (+0.1%), respectively while appreciation in SEPLAT (+1.1%) and FORTE (+2.7%) pushed the Oil & Gas index four basis points (bps) higher.
Investor sentiment as reflected by market breadth improved to 1.9x (from 1.2x recorded yesterday) – 29 stocks advanced while 15 declined. The best performing stocks were 7UP (+8.8%), NEIMETH (+7.1%) and CAP (+5.0%) while UPL (-9.6%), CHAMPION (-7.6%) and UCAP (-7.3%) were the worst performers.
In the NASD OTC exchange, three counters traded with total volume and value of transactions closing at 16,300 units and N47,375, respectively. IGI accounted for 61.3 percent of total volume traded, followed by CSCS (30.7%).
Analysts at Afrinvest said they expect market performance in the near term to remain largely driven by the expectation of positive H1:2017 corporate reports but did not rule out the possibility of some ‘end of the week’ profit taking in subsequent sessions.