Buying Interest in Bellwethers Buoy Market Performance

The local bourse opened the trading week on a positive note as the All Share Index (ASI) inched 6bps higher to 41,268.56 points on Monday while YTD return remained flat at 7.9%. As a result, investors gained N8.4bn in value as market capitalization rose to N14.9tn. Gains in GUARANTY (+1.5%), DANGCEM (+0.4%), and FBNH (+0.4%) were the main drivers of today's performance. Similarly, activity level trended higher as volume and value traded improved 41.1% and 77.4% to 450.5m units and N5.0bn respectively. Top traded stocks by volume were MBENEFITS (131.0m), UBA (67.8m) and FBNH (53.6m) while the top traded stocks by value were UBA (N781.1m), GUARANTY (N681.0m) and FBNH (N670.3m).

Bearish Sector Performance
Sector performance was relatively bearish as 3 of the 5 indices under our coverage closed in the red. The Industrial Goods index recorded the highest gains, up 0.6% from price appreciation in DANGCEM (+0.4%) and CCNN (+4.9%). The Banking index trailed rising 0.4% following buying interests in GUARANTY (+1.5%) and FBNH (+0.4%). On the flipside, the Consumers Goods index shed 0.8% as losses in NESTLE (-1.0%), DANGSUGAR (-4.2%) and DANGFLOUR (-2.0%) pulled the index lower. The Insurance and Oil & Gas indices fell 0.2% and 0.1% respectively as investors exited positions in WAPIC (-3.5%), NEM (-1.8%), ETERNA (-5.0%) and TOTAL (-0.2%).   

Investor Sentiment Weakens
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) weakened to 1.1x from 1.8x as 19 stocks advanced against 18 stocks that declined. Today's top performing stocks were CILEASING (+9.4%) HMARKINS (+6.3%) and BETAGLAS (+5.0%), while DANGFLOUR (-5.0%), ETERNA (-5.0%) and SOVERNINS (-4.3%) led laggards. We (at Afrinvest) anticipate this positive performance to be sustained in subsequent sessions as investors take positions in growth stocks which will buoy market performance.

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