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Sri Lankan shares edge up from 8-month closing low

COLOMBO, Dec 3 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan shares edged up on Thursday, recovering from an eight-month closing low hit in the previous session, and snapping a six-session losing streak as foreign investors bought into big caps, traders said.

The main stock index ended 0.26 percent, or 17.87 points, firmer at 6,880.66, after losing 2.7 percent in the previous six sessions.

On Wednesday it closed at its lowest level since March 31 at 6,862.79 on worries earnings of financial firms would be hit after the new budget proposals announced were implemented.

The index was in neutral territory with the 14-day Relative Strength Index at 31.662 versus Wednesday’s 27.625, Reuters data showed. A level between 70-30 indicates the market is neutral.

"Bit of foreign buying in big-cap shares helped the market," said Dimantha Mathew, research manager at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

"It’s a good sign that foreigners were back with a fourth consecutive day of net foreign inflow."

Foreign investors, who have been net sellers of 3.47 billion rupees ($24.23 million) worth of shares so far this year, were net buyers for a fourth straight session with purchases of 79.1 million rupees on Thursday.

Turnover was 1.29 billion rupees, more than this year’s daily average of 1.1 billion rupees.

Shares of Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc rose 0.92 percent, while John Keells Holdings Plc gained 0.39 percent.

Analysts said local institutions and retail investors remained on the sidelines.





Gains were capped after Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe warned on Wednesday of lower economic growth in 2016 due to the global slowdown.  (Colombo/December 03 2015)

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