Sri Lanka stocks flat, rupee gains
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks closed flat on Monday amidst foreign buying in John Keells Holdings and banking stocks, and the rupee strengthened against the US dollar, brokers and dealers said.
The rupee closed at 154.95/155.05 rupees against the US dollar, gaining from Friday’s close of 155.15/20 rupees against the greenback, on forward selling and export conversions, dealers said.
The Colombo All Share index closed 0.06 percent lower, down 4.21 points to 6,552.81. The S&P SL20 of more liquid stocks closed 4.42 points higher, up 0.12 percent to 3,721.97.
Market turnover was 1.3 billion rupees, up 188 percent from Friday’s 449.5 million rupees.
John Keells Holdings (up 1 rupee to 164), Browns Investments (up 30 cents to 2.60 rupees) and Asian Hotels and Properties (up 2.40 rupees to 52.80) contributed to the benchmark index’s gain.
Melstacorp (down 3.40 rupees to 60.60), Carson Cumberbatch (down 12.10 rupees to 187.90) and Bukit Darah (down 17.80 rupees to 216.20) weighed down the index.
Net foreign buying was 45.9 million rupees, compared to net selling of 139.3 million rupees the previous day.
Net foreign buying in JKH was 43 million rupees, according to Asia Securities, followed by Commercial Bank (8 million rupees) and HNB (4 million rupees).
Commercial Bank closed unchanged at 138 rupees. HNB closed unchanged at 242 rupees.
Net selling in Tokyo Cement (up 1.50 rupees to 60) was 8.2 million rupees.
Off-market negotiated trades, or crossings, amounted to 977.5 million rupees, accounting for 75 percent of the day’s turnover.
Four crossings in HNB totalled 903.8 million rupees and two in JKH amounted to 73.8 million rupees.
(COLOMBO, February 05, 2018)