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Price appreciation in banking sector counters

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by Hiran H.Senewiratne 

CSE activities were positive yesterday  and this was particularly true of banking sector counters which witnessed some price appreciation. The backdrop to these developments was the Central Bank announcement on a debt moratorium for business entities until March 2021,  that have been  affected by the COVID 19 pandemic.

‘This move would not affect the asset quality of banks because if the moratorium is not granted  the relevant companies will have to shut down and banks will not be able to recover loans, stock market analysts said.

Further, government plans to open the country for the tourism sector plus the Central Bank policy rate consistency have positively impacted banking counters. Therefore,  share prices in NDB, HNB, Commercial Bank, Sampath Bank and others appreciated, stock brokers said. 

Amid those developments both indices turned positive. The All Share Price Index went up by 76.2 points and S and P SL20 by 56.8 points. Turnover stood at Rs. 3.26 billion with five crossings. Those crossings were reported in NDB, which crossed 2.5 million shares for two different prices ( two million shares at Rs. 76 and 5000,000 shares at  Rs. 80.50), JKH 500,000 shares crossed for Rs. 90.7 million, its share price being Rs. 151.40, Access Engineering two million shares crossed for Rs. 51 million, per share value Rs. 25.50, Durdans Hospital (Ceylon Hospital Limited) 400,000 shares crossed for Rs. 40 million, its share price traded at Rs. 100 and Union Bank two million shares crossed for Rs. 23 million, its shares trading at Rs. 11.50.

In the retail market, top five contributors to the turnover were;  Expolanka Rs. 199 million (7.7 million shares traded), JKH Rs. 198 (1.3 million shares traded), CIC Holdings Rs. 124.6 million (720,000 shares traded), NDB Rs. 107.4 million (1.35 million shares traded) and TJLanka Rs. 102 million (2.65 million shares traded). During the day, 213.5 million share volumes changed hands in 32012 transactions.

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HNB promotes cashless transactions; joins CBSL’s ‘Rata Purama LANKAQR’ campaign

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Chief Guest for the event Money and Capital Markets and State Enterprise Reforms State Minister Ajith Nivard Cabraal, CBSL Deputy Governor and National Payments Council chairperson Yvette Fernando, and CBSL Payments and Settlements Director D. Kumaratunge with HNB Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer Dilshan Rodrigo as he completes a transaction via HNB SOLO at a merchant stall

HNB PLC, partnered with the Central Bank of Sri Lanka to promote the Colombo-leg of ‘Rata Purama LANKA QR’ campaign at Diyatha Uyana, to raise awareness and encourage the public towards cashless payments.

Having already linked LANKA QR to its digital payment app HNB SOLO, the bank was among other financial institutions and telecommunication partners in joining efforts to make cashless QR-code based payments the standard for mobile phones and digital payments countrywide, in moving towards a cashless and digitally-savvy Sri Lanka.

“We are entering a new era of financial technology, where almost all of our daily transactions will require no physical banknotes, but just a smartphone and internet connection with our bank account integrated to a digital payment app.

The Central Bank’s national directive for banks and financial institutions to adopt and integrate LANKA QR into their existing digital payment solutions has prompted an aggressive onboarding of merchants to the new payment solution across the country. With our extensive customer base, SOLO is no doubt a significant contributor to this innovative initiative,” HNB Deputy General Manager – Retail and SME Banking, Sanjay Wijemanne said.

The Colombo-leg of the ‘Rata Purama LANKA QR’ campaign raised awareness regarding SOLO’s many facilities, including zero human interaction, efficiency, and eliminated risks that influenced many vendors to come on board.

 

(HNB)

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Bank of Ceylon empowering nation with Lanka Q

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The Bank of Ceylon in its mission to assist the government initiative to empower Sri Lanka through digital technology is joining the customer awareness campaign of Central Bank of Sri Lanka’s Lanka QR digital platform.

Bank of Ceylon had its most recent major awareness programs in Borella and Maharagama along with the other branches in Colombo District in line with the Central Bank’s main program held in “Diyatha Uyana” with the participation of all Lanka QR certified banks on the same day.

Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) has organized a series of awareness and promotion campaigns for popularizing Lanka QR with the participation of all Lanka QR certified financial institutions throughout the country with the aim of speeding up the customer adaptation process towards digital banking.

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Sri Lanka Insurance posts a staggering revenue of Rs. 55.2 billion during 2020

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Amidst the turbulent and challenging year Sri Lanka Insurance has closed year 2020 on a positive note recording phenomenal revenue growth with exceptional service innovations.

Sri Lanka Insurance the premier insurer to the nation recorded stellar performance in 2020 to record Rs. 55.2 billion revenue for the year, a marked improvement on the Rs.48.6 billion in the year 2019, a press release said.

It adds – In the year of 2020 Sri Lanka Insurance reported 30 % growth in life insurance premium increasing to Rs.19.2 billion whilst general insurance reported 7% growth in premium grew to Rs. 20.1 billion. The company achieved a combined Gross Written Premium (GWP) growth rate of 17 % during the year. General insurance contributed 51% towards the total GWP whilst Life Insurance contributed 49 %.

‘In continuing with its tradition of leadership, Sri Lanka Insurance in 2020 surpassed its own record to declare a sum of Rs.8.2 billion as bonus to policyholders. The cumulative life insurance bonus paid out during the past 10 years tops a massive Rs.54 billion making the SLIC bonus payout unmatchable.

‘As the national insurer we have witnessed yet another challenging year and the consequences brought out by pandemic outbreak urged us to conduct our business operations in a more empathetic manner. SLIC has always taken the lead to protect the nation and during this difficult time Sri Lanka Insurance launched many initiatives to sustain country’s health defenses while ensuring our customers receive uninterrupted insurance service.

‘As the pioneering insurance company in Sri Lanka we are in the forefront to inculcate the importance of insurance to the masses as a national responsibility on our shoulders. We will further strengthen internal capabilities to serve the nation through innovative and affordable insurance solutions which cater to all Sri Lankans under the ‘Insurance for All” concept. Even though the times are defining we will continue protecting our nation turning obstacles into opportunities.’ noted .Jagath Wellawatta, chairman of SLIC.

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