by Taofik Salako,
The Nigerian stock market suffered a relapse yesterday as the decline in share price of the highly influential Dangote Cement Plc dragged the equities market to a net capital loss of N17 billion.
While the overall pricing trend remained tight amidst continuing rally in the oil and gas sector, losses recorded by Dangote Cement overwhelmed the modest positive pricing trend that had shaped the market in the previous two trading days.
Aggregate market value of all quoted companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) dropped from its opening value of N9.692 trillion to close at N9.675 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI), the common value-based index that tracks prices of quoted equities, declined by 0.17 per cent from 28,214.57 points to close at 28,166.42 points. Average year-to-date return now stands at -1.66 per cent.
Dangote Cement, Nigeria’s most capitalised quoted company, controls nearly one-third of total market capitalisation of the Nigerian equities’ market. Dangote Cement’s share price dropped by N3 or 1.64 per cent to close yesterday at N180, orchestrating a general negative market position. Guaranty Trust Bank, Nigeria’s most capitalised banking stock, followed Dangote Cement with a loss of 94 kobo to close at N25.83. Guinness Nigeria followed with a loss of 23 kobo to close at N92.77. Nigerian Aviation Handling Company declined by 16 kobo to close at N3.32 while Ecobank Transnational Incorporated dropped by 12 kobo to close at N11.38 per share.
Total turnover stood at 410.10 million shares valued at N3.62 billion in 4,179 deals. Banking stocks dominated top activities’ chart. The three most active stocks included Diamond Bank, with 141.36 million shares; FCMB Group, 48.10 million shares and FBN Holdings, with 40.76 million shares.
On the positive side, downstream oil majors continued to lead the gainers. Total Nigeria led the 18-stock gainers’ list with a gain of N13.50 to close at N283.50. Mobil Oil Nigeria followed with a gain of N8.55 to close at N179.55. Forte Oil rose by N7.76 to close at N163.11. Nigerian Breweries gathered N1.46 to close at N143.50 while PZ Cussons Nigeria rose by 94 kobo to close at N19.90 per share.
“Whilst a tight monetary policy environment prevails, we perceive frail sentiment towards equities may persist as investors continue to take advantage of higher yields in the fixed income market,” analysts at Afrinvest Securities stated