Equities Open the Week Positive on Bargain Hunting

At the close of trading on Monday, the All Share Index (ASI) appreciated 32bps to close at 27,925.35 points. Investors in turn gained N30.8bn as market capitalization advanced to N9.6t. Today’s performance was boosted by bargain hunting in GUARANTY (+1.9%), ZENITH (+2.2%) and WAPCO (+3.8%). However, activity was mixed as volume traded fell 14.6% to settle at 171.5m units while value traded surged 87.8% to settle at N1.7bn.

Sector Indicators Mixed
Sector performance closed mixed as 3 sectors gained while 2 declined. The Banking index erased its 3-day losing streak, up 1.3% on account of renewed interest in ZENITH (+2.2%) and GUARANTY (+1.9%). Also, the Industrial Goods index (+1.3%) closed higher solely on the back of bargain hunting in WAPCO (+3.8%) while the Consumer Goods index marginally gained (+0.1%) due to positive sentiment in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (+1.5%). On the flipside, the Oil & Gas and Insurance indices lost 0.5% and 0.2% on account of sell-offs in MOBIL (-3.5%) and NEM (-3.5%) respectively.

Market Breadth Weakens
Investor sentiment remained soft today as reflected in the market breadth which settled at 0.7x (17 advancing stocks against 23 decliners) relative to previous market breadth of 0.9x. The best performing stocks were CAVERTON (+9.0%), UBN (+5.0%) and WAPCO (+4.8%) while GUINNESS (-9.7%), DIAMOND (-5.5%) and CCNN (-5.0%) were the worst performers. Today’s positive close was essentially driven by bargain hunting in tickers that declined the previous week. We believe performance will be influenced this week by investors’ expectation of earnings which we remain conservative on, as we expect resilient performance in the Banking sector and weak numbers from Consumer and Industrial Goods companies.