Sri Lanka stocks close 0.14-pct lower, rupee steady

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks closed 0.14 percent lower Thursday on foreign selling in Hemas Holdings, while the rupee and gilt yields ended steady, brokers and dealers said.

The rupee closed relatively unchanged at 159.55/65 rupees against the US dollar in the spot market with export conversions and dollar sales by banks offsetting import demand, dealers said. The US dollar closed at 159.50/65 rupees on Wednesday.

A five-year bond maturing in 2023 closed at 10.18/23 percent in two-way quotes, unchanged from 10.18/22 percent the previous day.

A ten-year bond maturing in 2028 closed at 10.50.58 percent, marginally lower from 10.50/60 percent the previous day.

In equities, the Colombo All Share index closed 0.14 percent lower, down 8.50 points to 6,153.99, and the S&P SL20 of more liquid stocks fell 0.61 percent, down 20.78 points to 3,360.37.

Market turnover was 430.8 million rupees, up from the previous day’s turnover of 161.4 million rupees.

Net foreign selling was 169.6 million rupees, against buying of 4.2 million rupees the previous day.

Foreign selling in Hemas Holdings was 159 million rupees followed by 12 million rupees in John Keells Holdings, according to Asia Securities.

John Keells Holdings (down 2.70 rupees to 142 rupees), Hemas Holdings (down 3.20 rupees to 100.20 rupees) and Commercial Bank (down 1.90 rupees to 127.10 rupees) weighed down the benchmark index as 56 stocks gained during the day against 52 that declined.

Ceylon Tobacco gained 10 rupees to close at 1,160 rupees and Dialog was up 20 cents to 14.30 rupees.





Crossings, or off-market negotiated trade, amounted to 244.3 million rupees accounting for 57 percent of market turnover.

Five crossings in Hemas Holdings amounted to 150 million rupees and two in John Keells Holdings totalled 94.3 million rupees. (COLOMBO, 26 July 2018)


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