Decline in banking sector counters dampens stock market



By Hiran H.Senewiratne

The CSE commenced trading yesterday on a positive note but subsequently witnessed selling pressure in Sampath Bank and Commercial Bank counters during the latter part of the day. This resulted in a decline in several companies' stocks, including those in the non-banking sector, market analysts said.

Further, the lack of clarity in the government's proposal on a loan moratorium for the SME  sector  was another reason for banking stocks to decline in the market. Sampath Bank started trading at Rs. 155 but declined by Rs. 3 or two percent. Commercial Bank started trading at Rs. 92.80 but declined to Rs. 90.80, that is, a Rs. 2 drop or 2.2 per cent.

Amid those developments, both indices moved downwards, ie, the All Share Price Index went down by 6.88 points and S and SL20 declined by 13.78 points. The All Share Price Index (ASPI) gained just after the market opening and continued an upward movement in the first-hour of trade but reached an intra-day low at 5,982.44 and maintained a linear trajectory, tumbling to a close at 5,991.09.The day's turnover stood at Rs. 1.08 billion with four crossings. Those crossings were; Access Engineering ten million shares crossed for Rs. 208 million, its share traded at Rs. 20.80, JKH 1.2 million shares crossed for Rs. 195.4 million, a share traded at Rs. 163.50, CTC 60600 shares crossed for Rs. 66.6 million, a share traded at Rs. 1100 and Amana Bank 15.000 shares crossed for Rs. 33 million, its per share value Rs. 2.20.

In the retail market, companies that mainly contributed to the day's turnover were; JKH Rs. 286 million (1.8 million shares traded), Browns Investment Rs. 104.5 million (18.6 million shares traded), Sampath Bank Rs. 59.9 million (39,000 shares traded), Commercial Bank Rs. 17.6 million (192,000 shares traded) and LOLC Rs. 15.7 million (95000 shares traded). During the day 58.3 million share volumes changed hands in 4329 transactions.

A volume of 58,323,016 shares were transacted in total for the day.

Meanwhile 57 stocks gained and 67 fell. Ceylinco Insurance stocks closed at Rs. 125.40 or  6.31 percent down at Rs. 1,861.50  a share contributing most to the ASPI’s fall. LOLC Holdings PLC closed at Rs. 4.80 or 2.90 percent lower at Rs. 161.00 a share. Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC fell 2.00 rupees or 2.16 percent to close at Rs.  90.80 a  share also contributing to the ASPI’s decline.          


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