By Bamidele Ogunwusi-
Profit takers returned to the floor of The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Thursday when trading stalled after appreciating for seven consecutive days.
The All Share Index lost 0.11 per cent to close at 38,102.85 points yesterday, compared with the appreciation of 0.38 per cent recorded on Wednesday.
Similarly, the market capitalisation depreciated by 0.11 per cent to close at N13.13 trillion, compared with the appreciation of 0.38 percent recorded on Wednesday to close at N13.15 trillion.
The depreciation recorded in the share prices of Forte Oil, Oando, Dangote Sugar, Access Bank, and Zenith Bank was mainly responsible for the loss recorded in the Index Year-to-date, the Index appreciated by 41.78 per cent.
The total value of stocks traded was N5.60 billion, down by 8.28 percent from N6.10 billion recorded on Wednesday, while the total volume of stocks traded was 362.67 million in 4,055 deals.
The three most actively traded stocks were: Access Bank (69.79mn), Zenith Bank (58.84mn) and FCMB (47.16mn), while the best performing stocks were Unilever Nigeria (+5.0%), BOC Gases (+4.9%) and Conoil (+4.4%) while the worst performers were Forte Oil (-9.7%), Oando (-5.0%) and National Salt Company of Nigeria (-5.0%).
The most actively traded sectors were: Financial Services (291.77mn), Consumer Goods (34.65mn), and Conglomerates (18.47mn).
Performance across sectors was broadly bearish as all indices closed in the red save for the consumer goods index which advanced 0.4 percent on the back of gains in Nestle Nigeria (+1.3%), Unilever Nigeria (+5.0%) and Guinness Nigeria (+4.0%).
The Oil & Gas index led sector losers, dipping 2.3 percent on account of sustained losses in Forte Oil (-9.7%) and Oando (-5.0%). The banking index followed, down 1.0 percent due to declines in Guaranty Trust Bank (-1.2%) and Zenith Bank (-2.0%) while the industrial goods index closed the day flat.
Investor sentiment at the close of trading further waned to 0.7x against 0.9x recorded on Wednesday as 20 stocks advanced while 27 declined.