21 stocks tumble as market gains marginally

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Stanley Opara

Forte Oil Plc, Dangote Flour Plc and Lafarge Africa Plc topped the losers’ chart at the close of trading on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange as 21 stocks plummeted.

The equities market closed on the edge as only 11 stocks gained following trades in 131.161 million shares valued at N2.754bn in 2,764 deals.

Forte Oil stocks depreciated by N3.04 (5.41 per cent) to close at N53.20 from N56.24, while Dangote Flour stocks shed N0.21 (5.12 per cent) to close at N3.89 from N4.10.

In the same vein, Lafarge share price dropped by N2.10 (five per cent) to close at N39.90 from N42.

The NSE market capitalisation rose insignificantly to N8.739tn from N8.738tn, while the All-Share Index closed at 25,251.63 basis points from 25,249.49 basis points.

The equities market closed positive for the third consecutive trading day, advancing marginally by 0.01 per cent, to settle the year-to-date return at -6.04 per cent.

Custodian and Allied Plc was the top gainer for the day, advancing by 4.94 per cent to close at N3.40. Nigerian Breweries Plc trailed closely behind with 4.33 per cent gain. Continental Reinsurance Plc, FBN Holdings Plc and Capital Hotel Plc followed with 3.81 per cent, 3.15 per cent and 2.78 per cent, respectively.

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Unilever Nigeria Plc and PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc shares also dropped by five per cent and 4.93 per cent, accordingly.

The NSE food/beverage and insurance indices appreciated by 1.52 per cent and 0.47 per cent, respectively, while the industrial, oil/gas and banking indices declined by 2.11 per cent, 1.47 per cent and 0.56 per cent, respectively.

“The marginal gain witnessed in the equities market on Tuesday may be attributed to investors keying into stocks currently trading below their intrinsic values as well as the trickles of bearish activities on large-cap tickers,” analysts at Meristem Securities said.

Meanwhile, amid relatively unchanged system liquidity, the interbank call rate rose by 267 basis points to 20.50 per cent. The naira appreciated 0.25 against the dollar to close at 305.25 at the spot market while the one- year forward rate remained unchanged at N349.

The Treasury bills market traded bullish, with yields declining 113 basis points on the average. However, the case was markedly different for short-dated maturities as sell-offs drove yields higher.

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Notably, yields on 185 day-to-maturity and 346DTM bills dropped to 17.89 per cent and 17.86 per cent, respectively, while the yields on the 31DTM and 94DTM bills rose to 12.39 per cent and 17.03 per cent, respectively.

Meanwhile, the persistent bullish sentiment in the bond market following last week’s Primary Market Auction faded as slight yield advances were observed across the space. Particularly, yields on the 16.39 per cent FGN January 2022 and 14.20 per cent FGN March 2024 bonds advanced three basis points and five basis points, respectively, to close at 15.87 per cent and 15.89 per cent.

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