AxaMansard, Diamond Bank, Linkage lead N27bn market gain

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Stanley Opara

AxaMansard Insurance Plc, Diamond Bank Plc, Linkage Assurance Plc, Livestock Feeds Plc and Transnational Corporation of Nigeria Plc emerged the top five gainers at the close of trading on Thursday as the Nigerian Stock Exchange market capitalisation appreciated by N27bn.

A total of 443.675 million shares valued at N3.175bn exchanged hands in 2,993 deals.

AxaMansard shares price appreciated by 6.49 per cent to close at N2.46 from N2.31; Diamond Bank shares saw an appreciation of five per cent to close at N1.05 from N1; Linkage Assurance closed at N0.84 from N0.80, gaining five per cent; Livestock shares rose to N0.88 from N0.84, gaining 4.76 per cent; while Transcorp closed at N1.45 from N1.39, gaining 4.32 per cent.

Following a two-day decline, the Nigerian All-Share Index gained 0.22 per cent at the end of Thursday’s trading, thereby settling the year-to-date return at 36.68 per cent.

Also, volume and value of transactions advanced by 31.89 per cent and 73.09 per cent, respectively. There were 30 gainers and 13 decliners, thus advancing the market breadth.

On the laggards’ list were University Press Plc, which shed the most, after losing 4.90 per cent. This was trailed by Fidson Healthcare Plc, Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals Plc, Union Bank of Nigeria Plc and Honeywell Flour Mill Plc, which declined respectively by 4.57 per cent, 4.23 per cent, 4.17 per cent and 1.47 per cent.

Sector performance, as measured by the NSE sector indices, showed that all sectors appreciated except for the banking index, which plummeted by 0.32 per cent.

 The NSE insurance, NSE food/beverage, NSE oil/gas and NSE industrial goods indices advanced by 2.06 per cent, 0.61 per cent, 0.22 per cent and 0.01 per cent, respectively.

 “We attribute Thursday’s positive outing to the price advancements noted on most counters at the close of trading. On the back of the gains recorded so far, we expect the market to close positive for the week,” Meristem Securities analysts said.

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