Huge buying interest in SLT stocks

By Hiran H.Senewiratne

Huge buying interest was noted yesterday in Sri Lanka Telecom stocks with the government’s announcement on the restructuring of State Owned Enterprises (SOE). President Ranil Wickremesinghe as the Finance Minister delivering the 2023 budget speech made the announcement. SLT shares moved up by eight per cent or Rs 5.80. They shot up to Rs 76.10 from Rs 70.30.

Amid those developments both CSE indices showed some mixed reactions when the market closed trading at 1 pm. The All- Share Price Index went down by 52.26 and S and P SL20 rose by 8.9 points. Turnover stood at Rs 976 million with two crossings. Those crossings were reported in JKH, which crossed 500,000 shares to the tune of Rs 69.8 million, its shares traded at Rs 137.75 and Hunasfalls 900,000 shares crossed to the tune of Rs 36 million; its shares traded at Rs 40.

In the retail market top seven companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were; SLT Rs 140 million (1.8 million shares traded), Lanka IOC Rs 94.7 million (545,000 shares traded), Expolanka Holdings Rs 59 million (440,000 shares traded), Browns Investments Rs 45.6 million (9.1 million shares traded), LOLC Holdings Rs 40.8 million (119,000 shares traded), Sunshine Holdings Rs 37.3 million (one million shares traded) and JKH Rs 35.7 million (255,000 shares traded). During the day 50 million share volumes changed hands in 14000 transactions.

It is said that high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in JKH and Central Finance Company. Mixed interest was observed in Expolanka Holdings, Lanka IOC and LOLC Holdings, while retail interest was noted in Browns Investments, LOLC Finance and SMB Leasing.

The Transportation sector was the top contributor to the market turnover (due to Expolanka Holdings), while the sector index lost 6.66%. The share price of Expolanka Holdings decreased by Rs. 9.50 (6.68%) to close at Rs. 132.75.

The Diversified Financials sector was the second highest contributor to market turnover (due to Central Finance Company and LOLC Holdings), while the sector index decreased by 4.74 per cent. The share price of Central Finance Company moved up by Rs. 2.10 (3.44 per cent) to close at Rs. 63.10. The share price of LOLC Holdings declined by Rs. 34.25 (8.98 per cent) to close at Rs. 347.25.Yesterday the Central Bank-announced US dollar buying rate was Rs 360.99 and the selling rate Rs 371.83. The inflation rate is 73.70, which is likely to come down in the coming months.

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