Nigerian Bourse Halts 4-Day Bearish Trend

The Nigerian equities market halted a 4-day bearish run today as increased buying interest in FMCGs as well as Tier-1 banks buoyed performance of the benchmark index, up 12bps to 25,485.17points, while YTD loss trimmed marginally to -5.2%. Buying interest in UNILEVER (+5.0%), UBA (+2.0%), STANBIC (+1.6%) and ACCESS (+1.5%) supported the positive performance while market capitalisation increased N11.2bn to N8.8tn. Similarly, activity level strengthened as volume and value traded rose 295.4% and 56.9% to 561.5m units and N2.5bn respectively.

Profit-taking in WAPCO
In a reversal of the trend from the previous trading session, all sector indices closed in the green save for the Industrial Goods index (-1.1%) which was dragged by profit-taking in WAPCO (-2.7%). The Consumer Goods index led sector gainers, up 0.5% on the back of gains in 7UP (+5.3%) and UNILEVER (+5.0%). In the same vein, the Insurance and Banking sector indices trended 0.2% and 0.1% northward on account of price appreciation in AIICO (+3.6%) and UBA (+2.0%) respectively. The Oil & Gas index marginally rose 1bp.

Investor Sentiment Strengthens
Investor sentiment strengthened today as reflected in the market breadth (advancers/decliners ratio) which improved from 0.3x on Friday to 1.4x - 17 stocks advanced while 12 declined. The gainers chart was topped by 7UP (+5.3%), UNILEVER (+5.0%) and TRANSEXPRESS (+4.4%) while CHAMPION (-5.0%), LIVESTOCK (-4.9%) and FIDELITY (-4.2%) led laggards. In line with expectation, investors are reacting to earnings releases and currently taking advantage of stocks trading at bargains. We expect these factors to continue to influence trading sentiment in subsequent sessions this week.

NASD OTC Exchange Market Activities
In the NASD OTC exchange, the total volume and value of transactions stood at 25,274 units and N1.1m respectively as only 3 counters were traded today. NIPCO Plc accounted for 67.9% of the total value traded followed by WAMCO (28.3%) and AFRILAND (4.1%).