The Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index, NSE ASI, yesterday rose 0.28 per cent to close at 34,933.68 after opening the month on a negative note the previous day. While the market capitalisation added N36.1 billion to close at 12.8 trillion.
AIICO Insurance Plc led the price gainers with 10 per cent, trailed by Jaiz Bank Plc and C & I Leasing Plc with 8.8 per cent apiece. Diamond Bank Plc appreciated by 8.7 per cent, just as Japual Oil & Maritime Services Plc and WAPIC Insurance Plc chalked up 8.3 per cent,7.6 per cent respectively.
Fidson Healthcare Plc, PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc and Universal Insurance Plc led the losers with 10 per cent apiece. Tripple Gee & Company Plc shed 9.4 per cent, just as Guinness Nigeria Plc went down by 8.5 per cent.
The shares of Guinness Nigeria depreciated despite the company’s improved results for the year ended June 30, 2018. The audited results of the brewing firm showed a revenue of N125.9 billion, up by 14 per cent from N125.92 billion in 2017. Net financing expenses fell 54 per cent to N3.443 billion, from N7.527 billion following a rights issue of last year.
Buying interest in banking stocks such as Zenith Bank Plc, GTBank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc buoyed the return of the bulls. However, 23 stocks appreciated compared with 18 that lost value.
Profit before tax stood at N9.943 billion, up from N2.662 billion, while PAT soared by 249 per cent from N1.923 billion to N6.718 billion in 2018. Based on the improved performance, the board recommended a dividend of 184 kobo per share, compared with 64 kobo paid the previous year.