Trading at the Nigerian Stock Exchange suffered its sixth consecutive weekly loss as the All-Share Index declined by 1.7% to close at 38,648.48 points. Although trading closed positive on two of the five trading days of the week, the gains proved insufficient in lifting the market back into the green territory as Investors recorded a turnover of 1.675 billion shares worth N23.541 billion in 21,732 transactions last week. This is in contrast to a total of 2.092 billion shares valued at N29.744 billion that exchanged hands last week in 24,238 deals.
The Financial Services Industry (measured by volume) led the activity chart with 1.200 billion shares valued at N10.272 billion traded in 12,518 deals, contributing 71.64% and 43.64% to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.
Meanwhile, the consumer goods Industry followed with 110.564 million shares worth N3.577 billion in 3,234 deals. The third place was Industrial Goods Industry, with a turnover of 99.761 million shares worth N5.322 billion in 1,309 deals.
Trading in the top three equities namely United Bank for Africa Plc, FBN Holdings Plc and Zenith Bank Plc (measured by volume) accounted for 524.548 million shares worth N5.957 billion in 5,346 deals, contributing 31.32% and 25.30% to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.
The NSE All-Share Index and Market Capitalization depreciated by 1.74% to close the week at 38,648.48 and N20.221 trillion respectively.
Consequently, the year to date return dipped further into negative territory, settling at -4.0%. Activity levels were also weak, as volume and value traded declined by 22.6% and 30.7%, respectively. Sell-offs in bellwether stocks such as UBA, MTNN, ZENITH and GUARANTY drove the weekly loss.
Financial Experts say the bearish trades witnessed in the market are likely to persist in the week ahead as investors continue to cherry-pick dividend-paying stocks and, at the same time, exhibit reluctance in leaving gains in the market. And with uncertainties about the direction of yields in the FI market still bugging investors’ minds, the bears are likely to retain dominance in the market.
However, they advise investors to take positions in only fundamentally justified stocks as the unimpressive macro story remains a significant headwind for corporate earnings.