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Sri Lankan shares snap three-session losing streak

COLOMBO, Jan 28 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan shares snapped a three-session losing streak and closed marginally higher on Thursday as investors picked up some beaten-down large-cap stocks.

The main stock index ended 0.05 percent, or 3.43 points, higher at 6,319.89, after posting its lowest close since Jan. 20 on Wednesday.

The index had fallen 8.4 percent so far this year through Wednesday as foreign investors, unnerved by global concerns over China’s economy, have cut their exposure.

Foreign investors sold a net 13.9 million rupees ($97,081) worth of shares on Thursday, extending the year-to-date net foreign outflow to 2.71 billion rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 548.4 million rupees, lower than this year’s daily average of 768.3 million rupees.

The central bank rejected all bids at an auction on Wednesday, signalling it would not tolerate much increase in yields after the yield on the 364-day t-bill jumped 32 basis points to a more than two-year high of 7.80 percent last week.

This move could help investors return to the market, analysts said. The central bank, as expected, kept its key policy interest rates unchanged on Monday.

Shares of Lanka ORIX Leasing Company Plc rose 3.85 percent, while Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc gained 0.60 percent.

Dialog Axiata Plc rose 0.99 percent, while conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc ended steady .





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