COLOMBO, Oct 13 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan shares closed below a key psychological level of 6,500 on Thursday in thin trade as most investors stayed on the sidelines awaiting directions from corporate results and the budget scheduled for early next month.
The benchmark index of the Colombo Stock Exchange fell for a fourth straight session and ended 0.35 percent weaker at 6,487.13, its lowest close since September 27. It has shed 1.45 percent in the past four sessions.
"Investors will wait for clear directions on capital gain tax (in the budget)," said Prashan Fernando, CEO of Acuity Stockbrokers. "So until the budget, we may see low-volume trade."
Turnover was Rs372.2 million ($2.54 million), less than half of this year’s daily average of around Rs750 million.
Foreign investors, who have sold a net Rs2.37 billion ($16.19 million) worth of shares so far this year, bought a net Rs88.7 million worth of equities.
Trading volumes have been low as cautious investors waited for announcements of corporate results for the September quarter starting later this month and for direction on economic policy when the country’s budget is unveiled early November, brokers said.
Top conglomerate John Keells Holdings fell 1.36 percent, while private lender Commercial Bank of Ceylon dropped 0.47 percent.