Sri Lankan shares end slightly weak, hovering close to 12-wk low

COLOMBO, Oct 26 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan shares ended slightly weaker on Wednesday, largely near a 12-week closing low hit earlier in the week, in dull trading as investors awaited cues from the government budget and five-year plan as well as corporate earnings.

Sri Lanka’s quarterly earnings season started two weeks ago, but most of the firms listed locally reports in late October or early November. The national budget is scheduled to be presented on Nov. 10.

The benchmark index of the Colombo Stock Exchange ended 0.03 percent or 2.08 points weaker at 6,434.89. On Monday, the index hit its lowest close since Aug. 1 of 6,418.34.

Wednesday’s turnover was 311.6 million rupees ($2.12 million), less than half of this year’s daily average of around 734 million rupees.

"Everybody is waiting to see the budget and the government’s policy statement," said Reshan Kurukulasuriya, chief operating officer of Richard Pieris Securities (Pvt) Ltd.

"This trend will continue until the budget."

Foreign investors sold a net 49.7 million rupees worth of equities on Wednesday, the first net foreign outflow in 12 sessions. The net foreign inflow for the past eleven sessions through Tuesday was 1.23 billion rupees.

They have sold a net 1.74 billion rupees worth of shares this year.

Shares in Dialog Axiata Plc fell 0.86 percent.





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