Market Rallies on MSCI’s Decision to Retain Nigeria

The Nigerian equities market opened the month on a positive note today as the All Share Index jumped 3.2% to settle at 25,865.50 points.

The major drivers of market performance were NESTLE (+10.3%), DANGCEM (+5.0%) and NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+5.0%) largely traceable to the decision by the MSCI to keep the Nigerian market in its Emerging Markets index. Consequently, market capitalisation improved N276.2bn to N8.9tn. However, activity level waned as volume and value traded fell 4.0% and 3bps to 220.1m units and N1.5bn respectively.

Oil & Gas Index Emerges Lone Loser
Sector performance was majorly bullish save for the Oil & Gas index which depreciated 3.6% on account of sell offs in FORTE (-9.8%). The Consumer Goods index appreciated the most, up 5.0% as gains in NESTLE (+10.3%) and NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+5.0%) buoyed the sub index. In a related development, Nestle Nigeria Plc released a very impressive Q1:2016 result; Turnover grew 31.1% Y-o-Y to N36.1bn while PAT advanced 126.2% Y-o-Y to N6.7bn. The Industrial Goods index closely trailed, appreciating 4.7% as DANGCEM (+5.0%) and WAPCO (+5.0%) rallied. The Banking and Insurance Sector indices also followed suit, closing 2.3% and 0.3% higher respectively.

Sentiments Stay Positive
Market sentiments strengthened significantly today as market breadth improved to 2.8x from 1.0x on Friday, as 33 stocks advanced while 12 declined. The Gainers’ chart was topped by NESTLE (+10.3%), ETERNA (+10.0%) and TIGERBRANDS (+8.9%) while FORTE (-9.8%), FIDELITY (-6.0%) and WEMA (-5.0%) led the laggards' list. As noted above, today’s rally appears to be largely driven by the decision of MSCI keep Nigeria in its Emerging Market Index. Notwithstanding the above, a mixed bag of corporate performances from the recently released earnings results suggest that there is little left to stoke investors’ sentiment, hence we expect to see some profit taking in the trading sessions ahead.