Equities Close Marginally Higher Despite Strong Profit Taking

The equities market closed positive today, albeit marginally, as the All Share Index (ASI) gained 6bps to close at 28,263.16 points. Investors in turn gained N5.5bn as market capitalization advanced to N9.7tn. However, market activity was mixed as volume traded fell 5.8% to settle at 249.8m units while value traded improved 25.6% to settle at N1.9bn. Total deals transacted increased to 3,170 from the previous 3,136 deals recorded on Friday.

Sector Indicators mixed
Sector indices performance was mixed as the Consumer Goods (+0.4%) and Insurance indices (+0.2%) closed up on account of price appreciation in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+1.0%), FLOURMILL (+5.0%) and CONTINSURE (+2.1%). On the flipside, the Oil & Gas index lost the most on the back of profit taking in CONOIL (-8.2%) and OANDO (-4.9%). Likewise, the Banking index shed 0.3% against the backdrop of losses in UBA (-3.3%) and ZENITH (-0.9%).

Market Breadth Negative
Market sentiment waned today as reflected in the breadth which settled at 0.7x (16 advancing stocks against 23 decliners) relative to previous market breadth of 1.6x. The best performing stocks today were FLOURMILL (+5.0%), CADBURY (+5.0%) and SKYEBANK (+4.8%) while BETAGLAS (-9.7%), CAVERTON (-9.5%) and CONOIL (-8.2%) were the worst performers. Market performance has remained dictated by short term momentum trading in the absence of noteworthy sentiment drivers. Hence, we expect sentiment to remain broadly soft for the week as profit-taking may persist in subsequent sessions.