Sri Lanka stocks up 0.37-pct, rupee ends marginally lower
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka stocks closed 0.37 higher Tuesday on buying interest in John Keells Holdings, Ceylon Tobacco and banking stocks, while the rupee ended marginally weaker against the US dollar and gilt yields picked up slightly, market participants said.
Colombo’s All Share index gained 0.37 percent, up 21.65 points to end at 5,796.02, and the S&P SL20 index of more liquid stocks closed 0.92 percent higher, up 26.82 points to 2,935.90.
Market turnover was 1.6 billion rupees, as 68 stocks gained during the day, against the 62 that declined.
John Keells Holdings (up 3 rupees to 129 rupees), Ceylon Tobacco (up 12.70 rupees to 1,385.50 rupees) and Hatton Nation Bank (up 5.10 rupees to 205.20 rupees) contributed to the benchmark index gain.
Sunshine Holdings closed 9 rupees higher at 55 rupees and Sampath Bank was up 3.20 rupees to 222.10 rupees.
Net foreign selling was 499.95 million rupees, down from 1.7 billion rupees the previous day.
Net foreign selling at John Keells Holdings was 487 million rupees, Asia Securities said.
Crossings, or off-market negotiated trades, totalled 1.2 billion rupees and accounted for 74.7 percent of turnover.
There were 12 crossings in John Keells Holdings for 1.1 billion rupees, three at Amana Takaful for 60.9 million rupees, one at Dialog for 24.6 million rupees and one at Access Engineering for 26.2 million rupees.
Amana Takaful closed 10 cents lower at 6.30 rupees and Dialog was unchanged at 11.70 rupees. Access Engineering ended 10 cents lower at 13.90 rupees.
The rupee weakened to 170.90/171.10 rupees against the US dollar in the spot market, down marginally from the previous close of 170.60/80 rupees against the greenback, market participants said.
The currency traded at an intraday low of 171.20 rupees against the US dollar.
Gilt yields picked up slightly in the secondary market.
A three-year bond maturing at 2021 closed at 11.40/50 percent, up from the previous day’s closing of 11.30/45.
A five-year bond maturing in 2023 closed at 11.68/76 percent, compared to the previous closing of 11.65/70 percent. (COLOMBO, 16 October 2018)