Mixed Performance as Market Opens Week Bearish

The local bourse reversed the positive performance from Friday as the All Share Index (ASI) closed 40bps lower on Monday to settle at 44,912.53 points while YTD return moderated to 17.4%. Accordingly, investors lost N64.6bn as market capitalisation closed at N16.1tn. The negative performance could be attributed to sell offs across board with GUARANTY (-2.2%), NESTLE (-2.0%) and UNILEVER (-5.9%) being the main drags. However, activity level strengthened as volume and value traded surged 231.2% and 84.6% to 4.4m units and N15.9bn respectively.

Mixed Sector Performance
Sector Performance was mixed as 3 of 5 indices closed in the red while 2 trended northwards. The Banking index led losers, down 0.9% following price depreciation in GUARANTY (-2.2%) and ZENITH (-0.8%). Similarly, sell-offs in FORTE (-3.4%) dragged the Oil & Gas index 0.6% lower while the Consumer Goods index shed 0.4% on the back of losses in NESTLE (-2.0%) and UNILEVER (-5.9%). On the flip side, the Insurance index was the top gainer, inching 0.4% higher as CUSTODIAN (+4.3%) and NEM (+4.9%) recorded gains while the Industrial Goods index rose 0.2% on the back of upticks in BETAGLAS (+4.9%) and WAPCO (+2bps).

Investor Sentiment Strengthens
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) strengthened to 1.0x from 0.7x recorded the previous Friday as 26 stocks advanced against 26 decliners. The best performers today were CAVERTON (+9.9%), WEMABANK (+9.4%) and SKYE (+9.3%) while TRANSCORP (-9.2%), UNILEVER (-5.9%) and STERLING (-4.8%) were the worst performing stocks. In line with expectation, sell offs across sectors dragged the local bourse to close in the red. Following 3 weeks of positive gains, we expect profit taking to continue in subsequent trading sessions.