Equities Extend Loss as FMCGs Sustain Bearish Streak

The equities market posted a negative performance on Wednesday as the market continued to experience selling pressure especially towards Consumer Goods and Oil & Gas counters. At the close of trade, the All Share Index (ASI) shed 13bps to close at 26,245.34 points whilst investors lost N11.3bn in value as market capitalization settled at N9.0tn. Today’s market performance was as a result of sustained losses in Consumer Goods counters - GUINNESS (-5.0%), UNILEVER (-4.3%) and NESTLE (-0.8%). Also, market activity was mixed as volume traded rose 6.2% to settle at 394.8m units while value traded fell 19.6% to settle at N1.4bn.

Sector Indicators Close Weak
Performance across sectors was largely bearish. The Oil & Gas index led sector losers’ closing 44bps lower due to persistent sell-offs in FORTE (-1.9%) and OANDO (-0.6%). The Consumer Goods index (-0.2%) continued the bearish streak which has persisted since the start of the year as losses in NESTLE (-0.8%), GUINNESS (-5.0%) and UNILEVER (-4.3%) dragged the index lower. Similarly, the Banking index shed 10bps due to profit taking in ETI (-0.3%), and ZENITH (-0.2%) while the Industrial Goods and Insurance indices closed the day flat.
Weak Investor Sentiment
Investor sentiment remained soft today as market breadth (advancers/decliners ratio) retreated to 0.6x (from 0.8x recorded yesterday) consequent on 12 advancing stocks against 20 decliners. The best performing stocks were AGLEVENT (+4.8%), CUTIX (+2.1%) and AIRSERVICE (+1.9%) while PORTPAINT (-5.0%), GUINNESS (-5.0%) and DIAMOND (-4.8%) declined the most. Given the current weak macro-economic fundamentals, market performance remains subdued in opening trades this year save for the rally in banking stocks. Hence, barring any news to stoke investors’ appetite and release of company earnings, we expect further losses for the rest of the week.