Equities Market Slips Back to Negative Territory

Photo L-R: Mr.Rotimi Oyekan, Reward Investments & Services Limited; Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, OON, Chief Executive Officer, The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE); Mr. Oluwaseyi Abe, First Vice President, Chartered Institute of Stockbroker (CIS) Mr. Henry T. Olayemi, Chairman, Reward Investments & Services Limited and Mr. Kolapo Adedeji, Managing Director/CEO, Reward Investments & Services Limited at the Closing Gong Ceremony at The NSE today.

Dragged by losses in mostly banking stocks, the All Share Index shed 0.2% to close at 29,697.12pts after the positive close (+0.5%) recorded in the previous session. Principally, price depreciations in GUARANTY (-4.5%), ZENITH (-1.8%) and STANBIC (-2.8%) dictated the direction of the benchmark index. At the close of trading, YTD return of the ASI settled at -20.1% with the market capitalization settling at N9.5tn after having lost N16.1bn. Market activity also weakened as volume and value closed at 167.5m units (17.8% down) and N2.3bn (implying 15.5%) respectively.

Interest in Consumer Goods Stocks Garner Momentum
GUINNESS (+5.0%), UNILEVER (+2.7%), NB (+0.3%) and NESTLE (+0.3%) recorded price appreciation, pushing the Consumer Goods index 0.7% higher. The Insurance index improved 0.5% due to increased investor sentiments on CUSTODIAN (+3.7%) and CONTINENTAL REINSURANCE (+3.2%). The Oil & Gas index gained 0.2% after 7 consecutive sessions of losses with the Industrial Index trailing to gain 4bps. However, the Banking index performed the least as sell pressures on bellwether banking stocks dragged the sector to a 1.5% decline.

Market Sentiments Advance
Market breadth turned positive to 1.2x from 0.6x in the previous trading session. While 23 stocks advanced, 19 others depreciated. Top gainers in the market were GUINNESS (+5.0%), ETERNA (+5.0%) and CUTIX (+4.7%) while top losers were FIDSON (-5.0%), VONO (-4.7%) and UNITY BANK (-4.6%). Despite the positive close yesterday, activities in the stock market today point to a heightened responsiveness of the implications of the recent interest rate cut (from 13% to 11%) by the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC). We therefore advise investors to remain cautious as they take advantage of stocks with currently cheap valuations and significant upside potential.