ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s shares closed lower on Thursday, with investors delaying investments as the financial year comes to an end while also waiting for more clarity on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) deal, an analyst said.
The main All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed down 0.47 percent or 43.93 points at 9,228.50.
The market has been on a downward trend since last week as investors wait for more clarity on local debt restructuring after the IMF loan facility.
“Investors are looking at the long-term to contribute to the share,” an analyst said.
The banking sector is making a gradual and steady comeback as selling pressures have marginally reduced.
Analysts say that the index is pushing up because the share price has dropped by approximately 15 to 20 percent.
The banking sector had provided a large mass of 186 million rupees to the revenue generated in the market.
Profit-taking had been witnessed in Sri Lanka Telecom as the Cabinet of Ministers has granted approval in principle for the divestment of the stakes held by the Treasury Secretary.
The most liquid S&P SL20 index was down 0.34 percent or 8.99 points to 2,664.26.
Shares at Lanka IOC were gaining during the previous week on the news that the Sri Lanka cabinet has granted approval for three oil companies from China, the United States, and Australia in collaboration with Shell Pl to lease 150 fuel stations for each company to operate in the local market.
However, a sudden price revision of fuel by the Energy Ministry has hit the shares, dragging the counter down, but buying interest had been restored today as global oil prices have come down, pushing the interest for the index up.
The market saw a turnover of 912 million on Thursday, far below this year’s daily average of 1.8 billion rupees.
The market saw a net foreign outflow of 90 million rupees.
Top losers were Commercial Bank, Nation’s Development Bank, and DFCC Bank. (Colombo/Mar30/2023)