Equity market closes on a bullish note, gains 0.63%
Kayode Ogunwale


Investors were bullish in the equities market, with the ASI inching 0.63 percent higher to 40,788.68 points, following bargain hunting across major sectors.
As a result, investors gained N92.2 billion as market capitalization increased to N14.7 trillion. Price appreciations in bellwethers Seplat Petroleum Development Company (+4.0 percent), Zenith Bank (+1.7 percent) and UBA (+3.3 percent) accounted for today’s bullish performance. Similarly, activity level strengthened as volume and value of shares traded surged 732.4 percent and 248.9 percent to 1.6 billion units and N10.9 billion respectively. The top traded stocks by volume were FCMB (952.6 million), UBA (382.5 million) and Zenith Bank (65.2 million) while the top traded stocks by value were led by UBA (N4.2 billion), FCMB (N2.4 billion) and Zenith Bank (N1.8 bank).
Sector performance was largely bullish across 4 of 5 indices that we track. Only the Insurance index recorded a bearish performance, down 0.7 percent, due to losses in Equity Assurance (-2.1 percent). On the other hand, the Oil & Gas index appreciated the most, up 2.0 percent as investors took position in Seplat Petroleum Development Company (+4.0 percent) and Oando (+9.3 percent). Similarly the Banking and Consumer Goods indices advanced 1.3 percent and 0.6 percent respectively on account of gains in Zenith Bank (+1.7 percent), UBA (+3.2 percent), Nestle Nigeria (+0.9 percent) and Nigerian Breweries (+0.7 percent). Likewise, the Industrial Goods index rose 0.1 percent due to price appreciation in Lafarge Africa (+3.6 percent).
Investor sentiment as measured by market breadth (advance/decline ratio) strengthened to 1.8x from 1.3x recorded yesterday as 34 stocks advanced against 18 stocks that declined. The top performing stocks were Unity Bank (+9.5 percent), Oando (+9.3 percent) and Skye Bank (+9.1 percent) while Fidson Healthcare (-5.0 percent), C&I Leasing (-5.0 percent) and AG Leventis (-4.8 percent) led laggards.