Benchmark Index Closes Lower at the Exchange

The equities market opened the week lower at the end of trading on Monday to extend bearish run to the 7th consecutive session. The All Share Index (ASI) trimmed 12bps to close at 25,505.91 points while market capitalisation declined N13.3bn to settle at N8.7tn as losses in DANGSUGAR (-4.9%), ETI (-2.0%), STANBIC (-1.9%) and TOTAL (-2.5%) dragged performance. Market activity also softened as volume and value traded fell 32.1% and 3.3% to settle at 155.6m units and N858.5m respectively.

Insurance Index Leads Sector decliners
Performance across sectors was broadly bearish but for the Industrial Goods index which gained a marginal 1bps on the back of a rally in CUTIX (+4.9%). The Insurance index led sector decliners as it weakened 0.6% on account of losses in CONTINSURE (-4.8%) and NEM (-1.4%). Likewise, the Oil & Gas index closed today’s session 36bps lower due to profit taking in MOBIL (2.6%) and TOTAL (-2.5%). Similarly, the Banking index (-0.6%) closed in the red on the back of weak appetite for ETI (-2.0%), STANBIC (-1.9%) and ZENITH (-0.2%) whilst losses in DANGSUGAR (-4.9%) and INTBREW (-1.5%) ensured the Consumer Goods index (-0.1%) declined.

Market Breadth Unchanged but Sentiment Remains Weak
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth remained unchanged at 0.8x (from 0.8x on Friday) after 13 stocks advanced against 17 declining stocks. The best performing stocks today were TRANSCOHOT (+5.0%), FLOURMILL (+4.9%) and FIDSON (+4.8%) while DANGSUGAR (-4.9%), CONTISURE (-4.8%) and NEIMETH (-4.7%) declined the most. Weak macroeconomic data as well as high discount rate remains the major drag to market performance and we expect sentiment to remain anchored on macroeconomic policy responses (particularly on FX management) to the economic recession.