Sri Lankan shares hit more than 1-mth closing low; large caps down

COLOMBO, Sept 8 (Reuters) – Sri Lanka’s benchmark index hit a more-than-one-month closing low on Thursday, dragged down by large cap shares, as investors largely stayed on the sidelines amid confusion over falling bond yields, stockbrokers said.

The benchmark Colombo stock index ended 0.09 percent lower at 6,501.89, its lowest close since August 1.

Analysts said they expected shares to rise after results of the Central Bank’s weekly treasury bill auction on Wednesday showed yields fell between 23 and 34 basis points, with the benchmark 91-day treasury bill yield falling for the first time since July 8.

"Many investors are confused because, while T-bill yields are coming down, short-term fixed-deposit rates offered by banks are very high," said Prashan Ferbando, COO at Acuity Stockbrokers.

Foreign investors net sold Rs22.7 million ($156,444) worth of shares on Thursday, the first time in seven sessions, extending the year-to-date net foreign outflow to Rs2.77 billion worth of equities.

Turnover stood at Rs758.4 million, slightly higher than this year’s daily average of Rs752.4 million.

Shares of Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc fell 0.50 percent, while Ceylon Cold Stores Plc ended 1.53 percent lower and John Keells Holdings Plc lost 0.67 percent

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