The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) equities market segment on Thursday reversed its uptrend, dropping by N2 billion ahead of Christmas celebration.
Specifically, the market capitalisation which opened at N20.281 trillion lost two billion naira to close at N20.279 trillion.
The All-Share Index shed 3.73 basis points or 0.01 per cent to close at 38,800.01 basis points from 38,803.74 basis points recorded on Wednesday.
Sector performances were mixed today with the Industrial (-0.28 per cent) and Banking (-0.22 per cent) sectors closing negatively, while the Oil & Gas (+0.95per cent) and Consumer Goods (+0.26 per cent) sectors closed in the green.
The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are; Lafarge Africa, Guaranty Trust Bank, Champion Breweries, United Bank for Africa and May & Baker.
Champion Breweries led the losers’ chart in percentage terms, losing 7.87 per cent, to close at 82k per share.
Lafarge Africa followed with 4.76 per cent to close at N21, while Jaiz Bank dipped 4.76 per cent to close at 60k per share.
AIICO Insurance lost 3.08 per cent to close at N1.26, while May & Baker shed 1.33 per cent to close at N3.70 per share.
On the other hand, FTN Cocoa Processors dominated the gainers’ chart in percentage terms, gaining 9.88 per cent to close at 89k per share.
Lasaco Assurance came second with 9.68 per cent to close at 34k, while Skyway Aviation Handling Company rose by 9.22 per cent to close at N3.20 per share. Japaul Gold and Ventures improved by 9.09 per cent to close at 48k, while Oando appreciated by 8.66 per cent to close at N3.64 per share.
Also, the total volume of shares traded decreased by 73.95 per cent with an exchange of 389.72 million shares worth N7.97 billion in 2,925 deals.
This was against a total of 1.49 billion shares valued at N18.75 billion transacted in 4,316 deals on Wednesday.
Transactions in the shares of Zenith Bank topped the activity chart with 84.43 million shares worth N2.13 billion.
Guaranty Trust Bank sold 59.18 million shares valued at N1.94 billion, while Flour Mills traded 56.16 million shares worth N1.57 billion.
Lafarge Africa traded 26.08 million shares valued at N556.89 million, while Lasaco Assurance transacted 22.99 million shares worth N7.29 million.
“The equities market closed marginally down today due to the losses recorded in the Industrial and Banking sectors Going forward, we expect investor’s sentiments to be swayed by the search for real positive returns amidst a low interest-rate environment. Nonetheless, we reiterate that this may be a great period to pick up some quality names with a medium to long-term investment horizon.”