Nigerian equities continued their rally yesterday at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) as investors appeared to be reallocating more funds to large-cap stocks ahead of the release of first half earnings reports of most blue chip companies.
Key benchmark indices at the stock market showed improved positive pricing trend with average day-on-day gain of 0.80 per cent, equivalent to net capital gain of N92 billion. With this, the average year-to-date return climbed to 23.71 per cent.
With 33 gainers to 19 losers, the positive market situation was buoyed by widespread positive sentiment as well as considerable rally within the highly influential large-cap stocks. Leading oil and gas fast moving consumer goods companies, cement companies and banks headlined the positive market situation.
The All Share Index (ASI)-the main price index for the Nigerian stock market, scaled another level to 33,246.91 points from its opening index of 32,981.63 points. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities rose correspondingly from its opening value of N11.367 trillion to close at N11.459 trillion.
All sectoral indices closed positive with the exception of the NSE Consumer Goods Index, which slipped by 0.01 per cent. With three oil and gas stocks atop the gainers’ list, the NSE Oil & Gas Index recorded the highest sectoral gain with a gain of 2.8 per cent. The NSE Industrial Goods Index followed with 2.0 per cent. The NSE Banking Index appreciated by 0.8 per cent while the NSE Insurance Index inched up by 0.2 per cent.
Oil and gas stocks dominated the top gainers’ list. Mobil Oil Nigeria led the gainers with a gain of N22.45 to close at N259. Seplat Petroleum Development Company rose by N5 to close at N475. Forte Oil placed third with a gain of N3.50 to close at N53.50. Guinness Nigeria rallied N3 to close at N63. Lafarge Africa rose by N2.01 to close at N52. Dangote Cement, the most capitalised quoted company, appreciated by N1.85 to close at N208.11. International Breweries garnered N1.49 to close at N31.46. Stanbic IBTC Holdings rose by N1.04 to close at N31.30. Nestle Nigeria gathered 75 kobo to close at N903.05 while Guaranty Trust Bank, the most capitalised banking stock, chalked up 70 kobo to close at N36.90 per share.
Investors also upped stakes on equities as turnover volume and value rose by 6.65 per cent and 37.2 per cent respectively. Investors swapped 288.85 million shares valued at N3.82 billion in 3,631 deals. United Bank for Africa was the most active stock with 114.47 million shares valued at N1.03 billion. Guaranty Trust Bank ranked second with 23.92 million shares worth N871.51 million while Niger Insurance placed third with 18 million shares worth N9 million.
On the negative side, Nigerian Breweries led the losers with a loss of N1.47 to close at N153.70. UAC of Nigeria followed with a drop of 42 kobo to close at N16.58. NCR Nigeria declined by 38 kobo to close at N7.33. Champion Breweries lost 18 kobo to close at N2.39. BOC Gases declined by 16 kobo to close at N3.14 while Access Bank lost 15 kobo to close at N9.80 per share.
Analysts attributed the continuing uptrend to portfolio rebalancing ahead of the release of the first half results off quoted companies. Not less than seven companies including Dangote Cement, Guaranty Trust Bank, Zenith Bank and Forte Oil have indicated that they could release their results by the month-end.