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Sri Lanka rupee ends weaker, stocks down 0.77-pct

ECONOMYNEXT – The Sri Lanka rupee weakened to a new low of around 176.45/55 rupees against the US dollar on Wednesday while stocks ended 0.77 percent lower on selling interest in telcos and banking stocks, market participants said.

The rupee had traded at an intraday low of 176.55 rupees to the dollar, weakening from the previous day’s closing around 176.15/25 rupees.

Gilt yields closed steady in the secondary market with trades in long-term bonds dominating activity.

A bond maturing in 2027 closed at 12.30/40 percent, narrowing from the previous closing of 12.10/50 percent.

In equities, Colombo’s All Share index fell 0.77 percent, down 46.18 points to 5,947.36, and the S&P SL20 of more liquid stocks ended 1.32 percent lower, down 41.39 points to 3,087.48.

Market turnover was 729.3 million rupees with 105 stocks declining during the day against 27 that gained.

Dialog (down 30 cents to 11.50 rupees), LOLC Holdings (down 4 rupees to 88 rupees) and Access Engineering (down 1.60 rupees to 15.80 rupees) contributed to the benchmark index decline.

Commercial Bank ended 1.30 rupees lower at 113.70 rupees and Sampath Bank was down 4 rupees to 227.90 rupees.

Net foreign buying was 26.8 million rupees, down from 53.8 million rupees the previous day.

Foreign buying in Seylan Bank was 19 million rupees, according to Asia Securities. The stocks closed 2.10 rupees lower at 70 rupees.

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Crossings, or off-market negotiated trades, amounted to 471 million rupees and was 64.6 percent of market turnover.

There were two crossings in Ceylon Tobacco for 386.8 million rupees and one each in Teejay Lanka for 55.2 million rupees and NDB Bank for 29 million rupees.

Ceylon Tobacco closed unchanged at 1,424, while Teejay Lanka ended 40 cents lower at 32.50 and NDB Bank was down 2.50 rupees to 100.30 rupees. (COLOMBO, 14 November 2018)

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