JULIUS BERGER, STANBIC IBTC, OTHERS LIFT CAPITALISATION BY N178 BILLION

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Nigerian Stock ExchangeFollowing gains recorded by blue-chip stocks, including Julius Berger and Stanbic IBTC, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) reopened upbeat yesterday as market capitalisation appreciate by N178 billion.

At the reopening of trading yesterday, the All-Share Index (ASI) rose by 340.48 points or 0.89 per cent to close at 38,722.87 points. Investors gained N178 billion in value as market capitalisation went up to N20.260 trillion.

The upturn was triggered by gains recorded in medium and large-capitalised stocks such as Stanbic IBTC Holdings, BUA Cement, Julius Berger, Ardova Plc and UAC of Nigeria (UACN).

Reacting to market performance, analysts at United Capital Plc said: “We retain the expectation of a short-term rebound in the market. The improving investor sentiment (for the second consecutive week) indicates mild interest in key counters as investors begin to buy the dip but value stocks.

Vetiva Dealing and Brokerage said: “With market sentiment seemingly on the up, thanks to some positive earnings and dividend announcements, we expect tomorrow’s (today) session to be neutral to positive.

However, we do not rule out the possibility of some profit-taking activities. Investors will also await feedback from the MPC meeting tomorrow (today), which we believe will shape the market direction for the rest of the week.

On the price movement chart, 26 stocks appreciated while eight constituted the loser chart. Julius Berger and Stanbic IBTC Holdings recorded the highest price gain of 10 per cent each, to close at N18.7 and N144 respectively, while UACN followed with a gain 6.67 per cent to close at N8.

John Holt went up by 6.52 kobo to close at 49 kobo while International Breweries appreciated by 5.88 kobo to close at N5.40 kobo. On the other hand, Champion breweries led the losers’ chart by 8.2 per cent to close at N2.24 kobo.

Jaiz Bank followed with a decline of 4.48 per cent to close at 64 kobo while Japaul Gold and Ventures declined by 4.08 per cent to close at 47 kobo.

Consolidated Hallmark Insurance declined by 3.23 per cent to close at 30 kobo, while Learn Africa shed 2.73 per cent to close at N1.07 kobo.

The total volume of trades declined by 4.6 per cent to 277.235 million units, valued at N3.053 billion and exchanged in 4,299 deals. Transactions in the shares of Union Bank of Nigeria (UBN) topped the activity chart with 79.895 million shares valued at N423.435 million.

Guaranty Trust Bank followed with 36.129 million shares worth N1.124 billion, while FBN Holdings (FBNH) traded 33.297 million shares valued at N242.464 million.

Zenith Bank traded 25.003 million shares valued at N562.472 million, while Transnational Corporation of Nigeria transacted 24.057 million shares worth N19.469 million.

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