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Tuesday May 17th, 2022

Sri Lanka stock index falls after touching new peak on CLC amid dumping of speculative shares

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stock index touched a fresh all-time peak again on Tuesday(09) but retreated with the biggest fall in two months dragged down by the market heavyweight Commercial Leasing and Finance (CLC) as well as dumping of some speculative shares, brokers said.

The Colombo benchmark All Share Price Index (ASPI) touched a fresh all time high for the first time
crossing 10,886.92 points within the first 15 minutes into trading, but closed at 2.44 percent or 259.60 points
down at 10,361.80.

The S&P SL20 index of more liquid stocks, fell 1.26 percent or 45.88 points to close at 3,604.06.

The day’s turnover was 12.2 billion rupees, more than triple of this year’s average daily turnover of over
4 billion rupees.

“CLC was the main reason for the fall, while we saw some speculative shares which were not fundamentally sound were dumped after taken to a higher price,” a broker said.

“Investors should be careful and identify these shares. Already this market has seen how the pump and dump deals burnt retail investors in this country. The Securities and Exchange Commission should be more proactive in keeping all investors informed.”

On Monday also CLC dragged the market down after a top Colombo Stock Exchange official in response to a question asked by a Sri Lankan investor on CLC in a Dubai forum said that companies without enough free float can be penalized.

The top official, CEO Rajeeva Bandaranaike told ECONOMYNEXT on Tuesday that he had been misinterpreted and that he did not talk about the new SEC act.

Bandaranaike said that he talked about the way illiquid shares are handled now and if there is a violation of public float those shares will be moved to a second board.

Shares in CLC, which brokers said does not have an adequate free float, nosedived 10.12 percent to close at 64.8 rupees a share.

Foreign investors, however, bought a net of 47.9 million rupees’ worth of shares, extending the net
foreign inflow to 46.0 billion rupees so far this year.

Brokers had expected foreign investors to exit after Moody’s Investor Service downgraded Sri Lanka’s
sovereign credit rating last week to near default category.

Other stocks that dragged ASPI down are Expolanka and LOLC Finance.

LOLC Development Finance fell 16.08 percent to close at 486.75 rupees a share while Expolanka Holdings fell 3.50 percent to close at 199.75 rupees.

The bourse saw 66 stocks gaining against 149 falling on Tuesday.(Colombo/Nov 09/2021)


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