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Nigeria’s equity market cap sheds N418 bln on losses in MTN, Zenith Bank shares

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By Ifeyinwa Ezeokoli

The domestic equities market started the week in negative territory with a N418 billion drop in the capitalisation, spearheaded by losses in heavyweight stocks.

Consequently, the market capitalization closed lower at N27.850 trillion following losses in MTN Nigeria Communications (MTNN) and Zenith Bank.

Thus, the All Share Index decreased by 1.48 percent to close at 51,127.38 points.

Accordingly, the month-to-date and year-to-date returns printed -5.7 percent and -0.3 percent, respectively.

The market’s negative performance was driven by price depreciation in large and medium-cap stocks, which are MTNN, Transcorp Hotels, Africa Prudential, FBN Holdings (FBNH), and Wema Bank.

This week, United Capital Plc said, “We expect mostly bearish sentiments in the market, supported by the illiquidity of the financial system.

“We note that the current bear trend is approaching a turning point as the Q1 2023 earnings season draws nearer.

“We anticipate the broad-based return of investors’ risk-on sentiment, which is to be catalyzed by declining yields in the fixed-income market.

“The current low prices and valuations will allow buy-side investors the opportunity to re-enter the market and take positions in fundamentally sound stocks, thus maximizing market returns.”

Also, the market breadth was negative, as 18 stocks lost relative to 16 gainers.

International Energy Insurance led the losers’ chart in percentage terms by 6.98 percent to close at N1.20 per share.

MTNN followed with 6.67 percent to close at N224, while Transcorp Hotels lost 5.80 percent to close at N6.50 per share.

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Africa Prudential lost 5.45 percent to close at N5.20, while AIICO Insurance shed 5.08 percent to close at 56k per share.

Conversely, Ikeja Hotel topped the gainers’ chart in percentage terms by 9.48 percent to close at N1.27 per share.

Transcorp followed with 9.47 percent to close at $1.85 and Consolidated Hallmark Insurance was up by 8.77 percent to close at $62 per share.

Nigerian Exchange Group rose by 8.16 percent to close at N26.50, while Jaiz Bank gained 5.68 percent to close at 98.03 per share.

The total volume traded fell by 58.19 percent to 226.59 million units, valued at $1.57 billion and exchanged in 4,373 deals.

Transactions in the shares of Transcorp topped the activity chart with 107.21 million shares valued at N162.83 million.

Fidelity Bank followed with 39.31 million shares worth N206.01 million, while United Bank for Africa traded 22.60 million shares valued at N190.36 million.

Zenith Bank traded 20.61 million shares valued at N521.29 million, while FCMB Group transacted 12.61 million shares worth N47.83 million.

 (omayowa@globalfinancialdigest.com; Newsroom: +234 8033 964 138)

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