• Sunday, February 25, 2024
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Equity price free fall to continue until September


Some capital market operators on Monday said that the free fall of equities in the nation’s bourse would persist because of the absence of a visible government’s policy direction and economic uncertainties.

They said in separate interviews in Lagos that the market was contending with many unsettled factors.

Rasheed Yusuuf, the immediate President, the Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria (ASHON), attributed the persistent downward trend to the Federal Government delayed economic blue print and appointment of ministers.

Yusuuf said that investors would continue with their ‘wait and see’ attitude until September when government would announce its ministers as promised by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“We still don’t know the policy government want to pursue and this is affecting the market because market is a reflection of the economy,” he said.

He said that “the trend will continue till September when government lays out its economic policy”.

Yussuf said that the e-dividend payment platform unveiled by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on July 29 alone would not turnaround the market unless there were positive economic policies from the government.

He also stated that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) tight economic policy in defending the nation’s currency was affecting the market.

Mallam Garba Kurfi, the Managing Director, APT Securities and Funds Ltd., said that policy direction was very important in kick-starting the market.

Kurfi said that call for further devaluation of the naira to its appropriate position and non-collection of dollar deposit by banks were affecting the market.

He added that release of banks debtors would also affect the market this week because “investors will wait to ascertain to know who and who is affected to know where to put their investment”.

According to him, investors are offloading their shares for payment of school fees because most of our middle class have their children schooling abroad.

Meanwhile a turnover of 1.37 billion shares worth N17.95 billion were exchanged by investors in 17,391 deals last week.

This was against 1.73 billion shares valued N23.39 billion exchanged in 15,043 deals in the preceding week.

The Financial Services Industry led the activity chart with 837.74 million shares worth N7.37 billion traded in 9,923 deals.

The Oil & Gas sector followed with a turnover of 200.37million shares valued N3.37 billion exchanged in 1,444 deals.

The third place was occupied by ICT Industry with 115.89 million shares worth N59.52 million achieved in 133 deals.

The All-Share Index lost 911.42 points or 2.93 per cent to close at 30,180.27 against 31,091.69 achieved in the preceding week.

Also, the market capitalisation depreciated by N312 billion or 2.93 per cent to close at N10.345 trillion, compared with N10.657 trillion posted in the comparative week.

Portland Paints and Products topped the losers’ chart in percentage terms, dropping by 18.35 per cent or 89k to close at N3.96 per share.

UACN Property trailed with a loss of 13.87 per cent or N1.39 to close at N8.63, while Paints and Coating Manufactures dipped 13.53 per cent or 18k to close at N1.15 per share.

On the other hand, Trans Nationwide Express led the gainers’ table in percentage terms, growing by 19.32 per cent or 17k to close at N1.05 per share.

E-Tranzact garnered 13.21 per cent or 42k to close at N3.60, while National Aviation Handling Company appreciated by 10.39 per cent or 48k to close at N5.10 per share.