Banking and finance stocks close a tad lower

By Hiran H.Senewiratne

The Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) yesterday witnessed acute decline as the market was still panicky with political uncertainty ahead of the presidential election, stock market analyst said.

Market retreated for the fourth day, closing 0.41 percent lower with selling in banking and finance stocks, provisional data showed.

Colombo’s All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed 24.45 points down at 5,932.07 after rising to a daily-high of 5,958.74 in mid-morning, before falling continuously to close at a daily-low. The S&P SL20 Index closed 0.77 percent or 22.91 points down at 2,935.32.

Market turnover was Rs.600 million, with 29 stocks gaining and 111 falling with one crossing reported from Ceylinco Insurance, which crossed 35000 shares to the tune of Rs 62.5 million per share value Rs 1780. In the retail market companies that mainly contributed to day's turnover were Sampath Bank Rs 84.8 million (511000 shares traded), CTC Rs  66.9 million (61700 shares traded). Dialog Rs 60.7 million (4.9 million shares traded), Tokyo Cement (Non Voting) Rs 35.8 million (one million shares traded) and Browns Investment Rs 32.7 million (7.3 million shares traded). During the day 36.7 million share volume changed hands in 5811 transactions.    

Banking and finance stocks closed 0.63 percent lower. Commercial Leasing and Finance closed 20 cents down at Rs 3.50  a share, contributing most to the ASPI fall. Sampath Bank, the most active for the day, closed Rs 2.70  down at Rs 165.10  a share and diversified Hemas Holdings closed Rs 1.70  down at Rs 81.30  a share, also pushing the ASPI down.

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