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Low bank interest rates encouraging people to invest in bourse – top CSE official

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By Hiran H.Senewiratne 

Low bank interest rates  are encouraging people to invest in the CSE. This has resulted in a boom in the market, a top CSE official said.

“Today, the total bank deposit amounts to Rs. 10 trillion and most people are looking at investing their funds in high yielding avenues because bank interest rates are around four to five percent. Therefore, investing in the CSE has become the best option, CSE – Head-Market Development Niroshan Wijesundara told The Island Financial Review.

He said people have changed their investment options to the CSE. Owing to that when compared to 2019 in 2020 investor participation has increased  by 51 percent. Further, most stocks are undervalued and the people are taking that advantage as well, Wijesundara said.

According to Wijesundera market capitalisation at the CSE  from 1st to  21 January touched Rs. 3699.7 billion. ‘It is a clear indication that there is a big boom in the market, he said.

Amid those developments, the All Share Price Index increased by 230.92 points to 8694.35 yesterday while  S and P SL20 increased by 207.12 or 625 percent to 3519.47. The turnover stood at Rs. 14.99 billion with ten crossings. Those crossings were reported in TJ Lanka, where 4.8 million shares crossed for Rs. 214 million, its shares traded at Rs. 45, HNB (Non Voting)  1.4 million shares crossed for Rs. 172 million and its shares traded at Rs. 125, Commercial Bank 1.1 million shares crossed for Rs. 109 million, its shares traded at Rs. 103, JKH 615,000 shares crossed for Rs. 105.2 million and HNB (Voting) 406 million shares crossed for Rs. 58.9 million and its shares traded at Rs. 145.

Meanwhile, Ceylon Cold Stores 43,400 shares crossed for Rs. 31.5 million, its shares traded at Rs. 725, Lion Brewery 45000 shares crossed for Rs. 26.6 million, its shares trading at Rs. 590, Sampath Bank161,000 shares crossed for Rs. 26.5 million, its shares traded at Rs. 165, Hayleys 26000 shares crossed for Rs. 20.8 million, its shares trading at Rs. 800 and Expolanka 350,000 shares crossed for Rs. 20.5 million, its shares fetching Rs. 58.50.

In the retail market top five contributors to the turnover were;  Expolanka Rs. 1.8 billion (29.9 million shares traded). LOLC Rs. 1.64 billion (4.3 million shares traded), JKH Rs. 1.13 billion (6.3 million shares traded), Dipped Products Rs. 887 million (1.4 million shares traded) and Industrial Asphalts Rs. 710 million ( 635 million shares traded). During the day  996 million share volumes changed hands in 67878 transactions.

During the day banking sector counters noted significant appreciation of their stocks and several index heavy companies such as, JKH, Dipped Products and Melstacorp showed significant appreciation in their stocks.

Sri Lanka’s rupee quoted firmer around 196.50/198 to the US dollar in spot next market on Monday while bond yields remained unchanged, dealers said. Rupee last closed around 197/200 in the spot-next market on Friday against the greenback with deals done around 198 levels, market participants said. There were spot interventions at 195.50 levels. 

 



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LOLC Al-Falaah unveils pioneering Wadi’ah Gold-Storage Facility with multiple customer benefits

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Sri Lanka’s most awarded and trusted Alternate Financial services brand, LOLC Al-Falaah recently unveiled their ground-breaking new product – the Wadi’ah Gold Loan Facility. This is the 1st time a Finance company in Sri Lanka is offering this facility. Al-Falaah Wadi’ah is a unique gold storage option offered to Al-Falaah’s valued customer base. All gold articles are tested for quality and authenticity using state-of-the art equipment by the company’s experienced staff without causing any damage to the jewellery. A unique ‘Gold Storage Certificate’ with the description of articles, including weight, quality and quantity along with the market value will be issued to the customer when obtaining this facility.

Speaking about the new product, Mr. Shiraz Refai, Deputy General Manager of LOLC Al-Falaah said, “Gold is a favourite investment option at all levels within the concentrated community. The metal is usually pawned, sold or exchanged when in need of cash. As the conventional Pawning options and Gold Loan offering has limitations to cater to the specific needs, as well as contradict with certain beliefs of the community, a concept acceptable and practiced in the industry is introduced by LOLC’s Alternate Financial Services Unit to its valued customer segment”.

Accordingly, a unique feature has been introduced to the Al-Falaah Wadi’ah Gold Storage facility offering the Customer the benefit of obtaining an interest-free maximum Cash-Advance in the industry at zero mark-up against the gold storage certificate value for any emergencies. In addition, for the convenience of the customers, the Gold storage facility period is extended from 3, 6 and 12 months without any requirement for a deposit and the custodial fees are comparatively competitive. The stored gold articles will also be offered a free Takaful cover with a reassurance of highest safety and security.

The Al-Falaah Wadi’ah gold storage facility will be initially available at selected branches including Wellawatta, Akkaraipattu, Kalmunai, Pottuvil, Grandpass, Maradana, Mawanella, Matara, Nawalapitiya and Negombo. Al-Falaah aims to make the facility available across all LOLC Finance branches and dedicated Al-Falaah centers island-wide by the end of the 1st quarter of 2021.

Commenting on the new Al-Falaah Wadi’ah Gold loan facility, Nishantha Jayasekera, Chief Manager, SME Unit & Head of Gold Loan Business of LOLC Finance said, “The main aim of this facility is to give financial-access to the grass-root level clients who do not have direct access to banking & finance, but require small cash advances to develop daily businesses and self-employment. Through this product and its value added features, we hope to cover all segments of the population”.

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LANKATILES donates high-end ventilator to Colombo North Teaching Hospital

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A Rs. 4.3 million ventilator has been donated to the Coronary Care Unit of the Colombo North Teaching Hospital, Ragama, by LANKATILES, the country’s leading tile manufacturer.

The machine was described as a high-end, world-class piece of equipment suitable for all patient groups.

Present at the official hand-over were Mr Mahendra Jayasekera, Managing Director of Lanka Walltiles PLC and Lanka Tiles PLC, Dr. S. P. A. Liyanage Ranaweera, Director of Colombo North Teaching Hospital, and Dr. Sanjeewa Rajapakse, Consultant Cardiologist of the hospital.

At a time when state-of-the-art equipment is urgently needed to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, LANKATILES reaffirmed its commitment to help frontline hospital staff in their efforts at reducing the spread of the virus and easing patient numbers.

The company said this was a commitment it is ready to stand by at all times in the interests of the country.

 

 

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Sampath Bank hosts Central Bank’s ‘MatarataQR’ event to promote QR code use

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Matara, April 3rd, 2021: Sampath Bank PLC recently hosted the Central Bank of Sri Lanka’s (CBSL) MatarataQR event, in a bid to drive awareness and increase acceptance and usage of LANKAQR, the common Quick Response (QR) code standard for the country that was introduced in 2020.

Encouraging consumers to adopt the use of QR codes in their day-to-day transactions, the event was held at the Sanath Jayasuriya Grounds in Matara under the patronage of the Chief Guest, Dullas Alahapperuma, Minister of Power and Guest of Honour, D. Kumaratunga, Director – Payments and Settlements, Central Bank of Sri Lanka; along with senior officials from the CBSL, other commercial banks and financial institutions. Sampath Bank was represented by Nanda Fernando – Managing Director; Tharaka Ranwala – Senior DGM – Operations / Group Chief Marketing Officer and Ajith Salgado – Group Chief Information Officer.

At the event, the Bank actively promoted its ‘WePay’ mobile wallet which helped attract more customers while also onboarding new merchants. A 25% cash back was on offer for payments at over 200 merchants in Matara on the day, made via the LANKAQR enabled WePay digital mobile payment app.

“We are very proud to partner with the Central Bank to host this event that will highlight the safety, convenience and speed of getting onboard the LANKAQR payment standard to the people of Matara. These benefits, coupled with the advanced digital banking solutions offered by Sampath Bank, make it a simple choice to migrate to digital payment technology and we warmly invite the merchants in Matara to come experience the benefits of adopting this new method of payments,” said Nanda Fernando, Managing Director, Sampath Bank PLC.

Sampath Bank is a 100% local bank that has deeply rooted itself in the lives of the people of Sri Lanka. Established in 1987, the bank has become a state-of-the-art financial institution that continues to be a market leader today thanks to its constant innovation and customer focused approach to business. It has introduced many firsts to the Sri Lankan banking sector including introducing ATMs to Sri Lanka, extended banking hours and slip-less banking to name a few. The Bank is steadily transforming itself into a ‘tech company engaged in banking,’ from the traditional approach of a bank engaged in technology.

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