Foreign-to-foreign block deals buoy bourse

By Hiran H.Senewiratne

"The stock market was down on low volumes but the turnover was pushed up by foreign to foreign block deals, while local investor participation was low., market analysts said yesterday.

Analysts said market participants were seeking more clarity on some proposed taxes and that there could be some amendments before the final vote on these heads in parliament.

Amid those developments both indices, ie, the All Share Price Index went down by 9.64 points and S and P SL20 was down by 3.63 points. However, the day's turnover stood at Rs. 1.2 billion with seven major crossings.

Those crossings were: Dialog 6.5 million shares crossed for Rs. 84,4 million at a per share value of Rs 13, Asiri Medical PLC 4,5 million shares crossed for Rs. 49,5 million at a per share value of Rs. 11, HNB 511,000 shares crossed for Rs. 130.4 million , per share value being Rs. 265, Lion Brewery 442,000 shares crossed for Rs. 238.7 million at a per share value of Rs. 540, Commercial Bank 240,000 shares crossed for Rs. 32.4 million at a per share value of Rs. 135, Sampath Bank's 180,000 shares crossed for Rs. 59.4 million, the per share value being Rs. 330  and Nestle 115500 shares crossed for Rs. `100 million at a per share value of Rs. 1625.

When it comes to the retail market , companies that mainly contributed to the day's turnover were: JKH Rs. 145.1 million (938,886 million shares), Sampath Bank Rs. 48.3 million (146,668 shares traded) and Commercial Bank Rs. 36.7 million (272,402 shares traded). During the day, 28.4 million share volumes traded in 2985 transactions.

Meanwhile, the Election Commission said on Monday that local council polls would be held before Feb. 17.

The government also released gazette notifications on the Inland Revenue Act and the Exchange Control Act, with investors waiting for clarification on the new legislation.

Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera imposed new taxes on motor vehicles, telecoms, banks and liquor in the 2018 budget presented last month, with a final budget vote scheduled for Dec. 9.

Meanwhile, JKSB reports on yesterday's CSE trading -

ASPI: 6,380.91 (-9.64 pts; -0.15%); Val T/O: Rs. 1,205mn (US$7.86mn); Vol T/O: 28.5mn; Trades: 2,985

Advance/decline ratio: 51/112; Top gainer: CITH.N (+17.70%) ; Top loser: SEMB.X (-33.33%)


• The ASPI ended lower amid healthy market turnover. LION, HNB, and JKH led activity levels with crossings also seen in NEST, DIAL, SAMP, AMSL, and COMB. Trading in LION amounted to 22% of total turnover.

• Beverage, Food, & Tobacco was the most actively traded sector (-0.08%)

• Land & Property was the best performing sector (+0.69%)

• Services was the worst performing sector (-3.56%)

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