ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s stocks closed weaker on Tuesday for the second consecutive session mainly driven by month-end profit-taking by investors, according to brokers.
The main All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed down 0.56 percent or 51.81 points to 9,233.40.
The market has been on a downward trend since last week as investors are adopting a wait-and-see approach until more clarity is given regarding local debt restructuring after the International Monetary Fund approved the extended loan facility.
“The market is down as the selling trend continues,” said Ranjan Ranatunga of First Capital Holdings, speaking to EconomyNext.
“As there is a price decline in all shares across the board, combined with the month ending followed by margin calls, the market continued on a downward trend.”
The market generated a slow and thin turnover of 860 million rupees.
The main contributor to the turnover is Lanka IOC, following news that the Sri Lanka cabinet has granted approval for three oil companies from China, the United States, and Australia in collaboration with Shell Pl to lease 150 fuel stations for each company to operate in the local market.
The fears of debt restructuring mainly affected the banking and financial sectors, which dragged the index down for the day.
The market saw a net foreign inflow of 30.9 million rupees, and the total offshore inflows recorded so far in 2023 are 1.01 billion rupees.
The most liquid index, S&P SL20, closed 0.81 percent or 21.68 points down at 2,656.30.
The market saw a turnover of 860 million on Tuesday, below this year’s daily average of 1.8 billion rupees.
Top losers were Vallibel One, John Keells Holdings, and Hatton National Bank.
Analysts said the downward trend is expected to continue for the rest of the week as profit-taking is expected to continue. (Colombo/March28/2023)