Colombo equities concluded the weekly activities in bullish sentiment for the third consecutive session despite foreign selling as the bargain hunters dominated the market activities. All Share Price index gained notably by 77.38 index points or +1.06% to end at 7,350.52 whilst S&P SL 20 index gained 57.99 points (+1.45%) to end at 4,049.15.

The gains were mainly driven by price inclines in primary blue chips such as John Keells Holdings (closed at LKR 183.70, +3.2%), Ceylon Tobacco (closed at LKR 980.00, +2.1%) and Hatton National Bank (closed at LKR 223.00, +2.8%).

Daily market turnover was LKR 1.1bn. Lanka IOC positioned at the top of the turnover list with LKR 117mn followed by Distilleries (LKR 110mn), Asiri Hospitals Holdings (LKR 93mn) and John Keells Holdings (LKR 59mn). Only two crossings were recorded today in Asiri Hospitals Holdings (3.5mn shares at LKR 21.80 per share) and Ceylon Tobacco (0.04mn shares at LKR 960.00 per share). Total crossings accounted for 11% of the market turnover.

Lanka IOC led the trades followed by John Keells Holdings Warrant 0022, Ceylon Grain Elevators and Access Engineering.

Lanka IOC advanced during last few sessions amid the significant decline in global crude oil prices. The price of a crude oil barrel was recorded nearly USD 43dollars today which is a 30% decline against the year to date high of USD 61 recorded in June. Counter advanced to LKR 43.40, +6.8% during the session.

Market breath was positive with 137 rising 65 declining while 56 counters remained unchanged. Cash map inclined to 55% from 46%. Eight counters declined to 52wk low prices while only CT Land Developments (LKR 56.00), Keells Food Products (LKR 190.00) and Tess Agro non-voting (LKR 1.60) recorded fresh 52wk high prices.

Amana Bank announced that the Monetary Board of the Central Bank has granted approval to extend the time period to comply with the minimum capital requirements.

Further, Ceylon Printers announced a right issue of 05 for 07 at LKR 1,200.00 per share. The purpose of this issue is to invest in expansion and the upgrading of Company’s printing at packaging facilities. The total investment would be LKR 60mn of which the equity component of LKR 30mn to be raised via the right issue. Subsequent to the announcement the counter advanced during the session and closed at LKR 2,250.00, +25%.

Foreign investors off-loaded shares for the sixth consecutive day with a net outflow of LKR 176mn. Foreign participation was 26%. Net foreign outflows were seen in Distilleries (LKR 74mn), Laugfs Gas (LKR 44mn) and Kahawatte Plantations (LKR 14mn) while net foreign inflow was mainly seen in Asiri Hospital Holdings (LKR 9mn). Subsequent to today’s outflows the year-to-date foreign outflow increased to LKR 3.4bn.

Market went through wild swings in the week as it lost more than 200 points in the first two days of the week but managed to wipe out 50% of the losses during last three days. ASI declined by 120.65 points or 1.16% during the week whilst 20-script S&P SL index declined by 91.53 points (-2.21%).

However, high activity level was witnessed during the week where average daily market turnover nearly LKR 2bn. John Keells Holdings topped the weekly turnover list with LKR 2.1bn followed by Taprobane Holdings (LKR 1.8bn), Commercial Bank (LKR 783mn) and Lanka IOC (LKR 324mn).

Ceylon Printers (+25%), Lanka IOC (+8%) and Laxapana Batteries (+8%) were among top gainers for the week whilst Hapugastenne Plantations (-17%), Eastern Merchant (-11%) and Lee Hedges (-9%) were among top losers.

Foreign investors closed the week on selling side with a notable net foreign outflow of LKR 2.2bn. Foreign participation was 33%. Net foreign outflows were mainly seen in John Keells Holdings (LKR 1.6bn), Commercial Bank (LKR 372mn) and Distilleries (LKR 135mn) while net foreign inflows were mainly seen in Hatton National Bank non-voting (LKR 21mn) and Laugfs Gas non-voting (LKR 19mn).

(Lanka Securities Research)