Sri Lanka stocks fall 0.13-pct, rupee extends record low
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks closed 0.13 percent Tuesday on selling in alcohol and tobacco stocks, while bond yields increased as the rupee closed on a record low against the US dollar in the sport market, brokers and dealers said.
The rupee extended its record low to 157.20/30 rupees against the US dollar in the spot market on importer demand, dealers said. The US dollar closed at 156.85/95 rupees the previous day.
The central bank had printed money heavily to push rates down before a New Year season cash demand. On April 18, 15 billion rupees were injected for 8 days. On April 20, 14 billion rupees was mopped up overnight through repo auction. On April 23 banks borrowed 9 billion rupees of printed money. Usually by this time most festival cash comes back to the system.
Gilt yields increased on low trading volumes, dealers said.
A five year bond maturing in 2023 closed at 10.05/15 percent in two-way quotes, up from 10.00/03 percent the previous day.
A ten-year bond closed at 10.30/40 percent, up from 10.25.30 percent the previous day.
The Colombo All Share index fell 8.46 points to 6,516.71, while the S&P SL20 closed 0.22 percent higher, up 8.12 points to 3,683.64.
Market turnover was 356.8 million rupees, down 35.7 percent from the previous close.
Distilleries (down 50 cents to 21 rupees), Ceylon Tobacco (down 10.10 rupees to 1,020 rupees) and Softlogic Holdings (down 1 rupee to 24 rupees) contributed to the benchmark index decline.
Net foreign selling was 25.8 million rupees, compared to buying of 100.5 million rupees on Monday.
Foreign selling in Dialog was 23 million rupees, and was 17 million rupees in Commercial Bank. Foreign buying in Sampath Bank was 20 million rupees.
Dialog gained 10 cents to 14 rupees and Commercial Bank was unchanged at 138 rupees. Sampath Bank gained 4.30 rupees to 311.30 rupees. (COLOMBO, 24 April, 2018)