• Thursday, July 18, 2024
businessday logo


Stock market closes week on a negative note

NGX says to deepen collaboration with ICAN for market development

Nigeria’s equities market closed the week ended Friday, March 24 in red zone. The market which declined by 0.04percent or N13billion in the review trading week came amid three sessions of negative closes as against two days of positives.

The market dipped despite expectations of opportunities for buy-side investors to increase holdings (in the near term) on fundamentally sound stocks with improved valuations and strong dividend yields.

Week-on-week (WoW), the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) All-Share Index (ASI) and its equities Market Capitalisation depreciated from preceding week’s 54,915.39 points and N29.916trillion respectively to 54,892.53 points and N29.903trillion.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) last Tuesday after the second two-day Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in the year, raised its benchmark interest rate known as the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR), by 50 basis point to 18percent, the sixth straight time. MPC held other parameters constant.

Read also: Stocks shed N17bn as market rout continues

“We note that the current rate hike does not pose any substantial risk as corporate actions become the main focus for investors,” according to Meristem analysts in their March 22 note.

The stock market’s year-to-date (YtD) positive return stood lower at +7.11percent.

Analysts at Lagos-based Vetiva research who had expected cautions trading in the market, as investors weigh the effect of the MPR hike on their real returns, also foresee investors cherry picking counters in the new week. However, they believe that general market sentiment is still cautious.