Investors at Nigeria’s equities market embarked on profit-taking in bellwethers Wednesday, dragging the benchmark index, the NSEASI 1.5 percent lower to close at 34,414.37 points.
The investors booked profit in DANGCEM (-3.0%), ZENITH (+2.3%), GUARANTY (+1.5%) and SEPLAT (-7.3%) worsening the year-to-date losses to -10.0 percent while market capitalization decreased by N190.5 billion to N12.6 trillion.
Similarly, activity level waned as volume and value traded fell 16.7 percent and 40.0 percent to 200.3 million units and N2.2 billion respectively.
The top traded stocks by volume were UBA (22.5m), STANBIC (19.3m) and FCMB (19.1m) while STANBIC (N904.2m), GUARANTY (N268.2m) and SEPLAT (N260.8m) led by value.
Sector performance was bearish as all sectorial indices except the consumer goods index closed in red. The consumer goods index, which emerged the lone gainer closed 0.3 percent higher due to buying interest in INTBREW (+3.1%) and NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+0.5%).
On the flip side, losses in SEPLAT (-7.3%), DANGCEM (-3.0%) and WAPCO (-1.9%) dragged the oil & gas and industrial goods indices 3.2 percent and 2.3 percent lower respectively.
In the same vein, the insurance and banking indices declined, down 1.6 percent and 1.2 percent respectively following profit taking in AIICO (-9.1%) LAWUNION (-9.6%), ZENITH (-2.1%) and GUARANTY (-1.1%).
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) softened to 0.8x from 1.3x recorded the previous day as 20 stocks advanced against 26 that declined.
The best-performing stocks were CILEASING (+9.9%), HMARKINS (+8.6%) and JAIZ (+8.2%) while MBENEFIT (-10.0%), LEARNAFRCA (-9.8%) and CHAMS (-9.7%) were the worst performing for the day.
“Going forward, we believe market performance will remain largely bearish as sentiments remain soft,” say equities market analysts at Afrinvest.