Equities market drops by N134bn as investors take profit in Airtel Africa.

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The equities market of the Nigerian Exchange Limited on Tuesday closed on a negative note as capitalisation dropped  by N134 billion, triggered by losses in Airtel Africa Plc and 15 others.

In summary. the All-Share Index (ASI) declined by 246.48 basis points or 0.48 per cent, to close at 51,446.60 points. Similarly, the overall market capitalisation value shed N134 billion to close at N28.022 trillion.

The market loss was driven by price depreciation in large and medium capitalised stocks amongst which are; Airtel Africa, Nigerian Exchange Group (NGXGroup), Champion Breweries, NEM Insurance and UAC of Nigeria (UACN).

Analysts said the bears resumed activities on stocks as investors book profits from the extended rally.

Also, United Capital Plc, said: “The Central Bank of Nigeria’s recent CRR debits in the money market will likely discourage investors from sustaining investment in equities in the short-term as they hope for improvement in money market yields.

“However, we see any downturn as a short-term buying opportunity as we expect investors’ risk-on sentiments will linger through Q1, 2023, favouring the equities market, as the prevailing downward pressure interest rates will persist through the quarter.”

As measured by market breadth, market sentiment was positive, as 18 stocks gained relative to 16 losers. Thomas Wyatt Nigeria recorded the highest price gain of 9.43 per cent to close at N1.16 per share. Mutual Benefits Assurance followed with a gain of 7.14 per cent to close at 30 kobo, while Academy Press went up by 5.65 per cent to close at N1.31 per share.

Lasaco Assurance rose by 4.44 per cent to close at 94 kobo, while Chams gained 4.35 per cent to close at 24 kobo per share.

On the other hand, NEM Insurance  led the losers’ chart by 10 per cent to close at N4.05 per share. Chellarams Plc followed with a decline of 9.90 per cent to close at N1.82, while Champion Breweries lost 9.58 per cent to close at N4.34 per share.

Cornerstone Insurance lost 6.67 per cent to close at 56 kobo, while Honeywell Flour Mills shed 4.96 per cent to close at N2.30 per share.

The total volume traded increased by 50.7 per cent to 345.491 million units, valued at N8.291 billion, and exchanged in 4,184 deals.

Transactions in the shares of FBN Holdings (FBNH) topped the activity chart with 151.388 million shares valued at N1.697 billion. BUA Cement followed with 30.459 million shares worth N2.920 billion, while Zenith Bank traded 25.459 million shares valued at N619.714 million.

Fidelity Bank traded 18.555 million shares valued at N87.555 million, while Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) transacted 13.009 million shares worth N15.453 million.

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