Nigerian stocks climb higher on renewed interest in bank shares

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Nigerian equities jumped 0.69 per cent on Wednesday, on course for a positive return this week, as investors’ exuberance for bank stocks helped sustain an uptrend that began at the last trading session. That helped pare the bourse’s year-to-date yield down to 2.04 per cent.

Telco titan Airtel Africa continued to be the sweetheart of investors, leading the charge as it did at Tuesday’s trade, with ETI in tow.

Blossoming passion for the shares of Airtel Africa, which has been the pivot of gain for two straight sessions, is much needed at a time when broadly upbeat half-year corporate results have failed to turn trade around significantly unlike in other bourses elsewhere.

At the rate of 0.45 per cent, the banking index enlarged the most of the five sector indexes tracked by the Nigerian Exchange, strengthening gains.

Gains mustered by the bourse in the last two days are jointly the biggest in many days, and it is probable that the issuing of the mid-year financials of the Big 5 banks commonly known as FUGAZ in the days ahead could be the major pillar the market will hinge on to sustain gain if they come out positive.

Market breadth, which measures the depth of investors’ sentiment towards trade, was passably positive as there were 20 gainers compared to 15 losers. 66 other stocks’ that partook in Wednesday trade saw no movement.

The all-share index expanded 271.84 points to close at 39,448.46 while market capitalisation closed at N20.6 trillion.

TOP FIVE GAINERS

Pharma Deko led the gainers, appreciating by 9.17 per cent to close at N1.19. Neimeth went up by 8.61 per cent to N1.64. Ikeja Hotels rose to N1.40, notching up 7.69 per cent in the process. Livestock added 6.84 per cent to end trade at N2.03. Linkage Assurance completed the top 5, climbing by 6.78 per cent to N0.63.

TOP FIVE LOSERS

FTN Cocoa was the worst performing stock, declining by 8.89 per cent to close at N0.41. Wema Bank shed 7.32 per cent to close at N0.76. May & Baker fell to N4.40, losing 6.38 per cent. Mutual Benefits slid to N0.34, recording a 5.56 per cent decline. Veritas Kapital closed at N0.23, going down by 4.17 per cent.

TOP FIVE TRADES

TEXEM

In all, 181.4 million shares estimated at 2.1 billion exchanged hands in 3,599 deals.

Transcorp was the most active stock with 20.5 million shares worth N19.3 million traded in 101 deals. ETI traded 17.5 million shares priced at N98 million in 120 transactions. FCMB had 15.3 million shares valued at N48.2 million traded in 46 deals. Sterling traded 14.1 million shares estimated at N22.2 million in 51 transactions. UBA traded 10.9 million shares valued at N83.4 million in 158 deals.

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