Profit Taking Drags Benchmark Index

The equities market closed negative today as profit taking dragged the benchmark index 34bps lower to 44,343.65 points while YTD return contracted to 16.0%. As a result, market capitalization decreased by N53.8bn to settle at N15.9tn. The negative performance was driven by price depreciation in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (-2.0%), INTBREW (-4.9%) and UBN (-3.7%). However, activity level was mixed as volume traded declined 25.7% to 651.9m units while value traded advanced 4.5% to N7.8bn.

Mixed Sector Performance
Performance across sectors was largely mixed as 3 of 5 indices trended southwards. The Consumer Goods index was the biggest loser, down 1.1% on the back of losses in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (-2.0%) and INTBREW (-4.9%). The Insurance index trailed, shedding 0.3% primarily due to sell offs in LAWUNION (-8.3%) and NEM (-0.6%). Similarly, losses in UBN (-3.7%) and UBA (-1.2%) pulled the Banking index 0.2% lower. On the contrary, the Industrial Goods index appreciated the most, up 1.9% as investors took positions in WAPCO (+4.6%) and CCNN (+0.5%). Also, buying interest in FORTE (+1.9%) drove the positive performance of the Oil & Gas index (+0.3%).

Investor Sentiment Weakens
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) weakened to 0.8x from 1.4x recorded the previous day consequent on 23 stocks advancing against 30 decliners. The top performing stocks were FLOURMILL (+10.0%), WEMA (+9.7%) and LIVESTOCK (+8.9%) while LASACO (-8.7%), LAWUNION (-8.3%) and UNIC (-8.0%) led laggards. Although today’s performance was in line with expectation given 3 days of consecutive gains, we maintain our near term positive outlook for the market.

In the NASD OTC Exchange, total volume and value traded settled at 259,195 units and N30.1m respectively. The SDFCWAMCO was the most traded security by volume and value.

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