Nigerian stocks Thursday closed in the red for the fourth consecutive trading session as the NSE All Share Index (ASI) shed 133 basis points to settle at 30,611.55 points, due to sell-offs in market bellwethers – DANGCEM (-2.6%), GUARANTY (-3.7%) and FBNH (-4.3%).
Market capitalisation equally declined by N150.4 billion to N11.2 trillion, while year-to-date (YTD) return fell to -20.0 percent.
However, activity level strengthened as volume and value traded increased by 100.4 percent and 63.6 percent to settle at 441.6 million units and N4.5 billion respectively.
The top traded stocks by volume were UNIVINSURE (150.1m units), ACCESS (73.6m units) and STANBIC (43.9m units), while STANBIC (N2.2bn), ZENITH (N515.2m) and ACCESS (N503.0m) were the top traded stocks by value.
Performance across sectors remained largely bearish as only two of five major indices appreciated. The insurance and consumer goods indices remained the only gainers due to gains in CONTINSURE (+7.0%), MANSARD (+6.3%) and NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+0.5%).
On the flip side, the industrial goods index declined the most, down 2.1 percent due to sell-offs in DANGCEM (-6.1%). Similarly, the banking index slid 1.8 percent due to losses in GUARANTY (-3.7%) and FBNH (-4.2%) while the oil & gas index dipped marginally due to sustained sell pressures in OANDO (-1.1%).
Investor sentiment, as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio), stayed flat at 0.5x as 12 stocks appreciated against 23 decliners. VERITASKAP (+10.0%), IKEJAHOTEL (+9.8%) and MBENEFIT (+8.7%) were the best performing stocks while ABCTRANS (-9.7%), DIAMONDBNK (-9.6%) and JOHNHOLT (-9.6%) led the laggards.
Analysts say the bearish performance week-to-date was expected on increasing political activities and investors’ apathy. They however see an uptick in market performance in Friday’s trading session as investors would likely increase buying interests in fundamentally justified stocks, which have declined in value.
The uptick, they added, would not nullify the overall negative performance of the local bourse.