By Hiran H.Senewiratne
The CSE yesterday saw an end to its four-day-strong winning streak, influenced by price declines in heavyweights Expolanka and LOLC Holdings, with active investors booking profit and others abstaining, market analysts said.
However, heavy rallies on Hayleys stocks were noted during the day. Major transactions took place yesterday when Finco Group, being one of the largest shareholders of Hayleys, divested/shed 22 million shares, which is equal to a three per cent stake of Hayleys, to several high net worth individuals and institutional buyers to the tune of Rs 2.9 billion, by way of a crossing, stock market analysts said.
The Hayelys share price in the last few days was a bit active and its shares appreciated by Rs 4.50 or three per cent yesterday. Its share price shot up to Rs 128.75 from Rs 124.25.
Sri Lanka’s gross domestic product, meanwhile, is estimated to have contracted 1.5 per cent in the third quarter of 2021 amid a Coroanvirus curfew and import restrictions, data from the state statistics office showed.
Growth slowed from a 12.3 per cent recovery in the second quarter and 1.3 per cent growth in the third quarter of 2020. Agriculture grew 1.7 percent, industries contracted 2.1 percent and services also contracted 1.6 per cent. A Covid curfew was imposed from August 20 and continued until mid- October.
Amid those developments both indices were down. The All- Share Price Index down by 75.03 points and S and P SL20 declined by 10.03 points. Turnover stood at Rs 8.3 billion with four crossings. Those crossings were reported in Hayleys PLC, which crossed 23 million shares to the tune of Rs 2.9 billion and its shares traded at Rs 125, JKH, 1.1 million shares crossed for Rs 163 million, its shares traded at Rs 143, Sampath Bank 900,000 shares crossed for Rs 47.7 million, its shares fetched Rs 53 and Amana Bank 10 million shares crossed for Rs 45 million, its shares traded at Rs 4.50.
In the retail market, seven companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were; Expolanka Rs one billion (2.9 million shares traded), Hayleys Rs one billion (8.2 million shares traded), Browns Investments Rs 281 million (20 million shares traded), Commercial Bank Rs 202 million (2.5 million shares traded), ACL Cables Rs 151 million (1.4 million shares traded), RIL Property Rs 133 million (8.9 million shares traded) and Royal Ceramic Rs 105 million (1.4 million shares traded).
It is said high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in Expolanka Holdings, Hayleys and Commercial Bank. Mixed interest was observed in ACL Cables, Brown & Company and Guardian Capital Partners, while retail interest was noted in SMB Leasing, Browns Investments and Capital Alliance.
It is said the bourse slipped back to the red zone, snapping the previous four-day rally on the back of profit-taking in selected counters.
Yesterday, the US dollar was quoted at Rs 200.67, which was the controlled price of the Central Bank to maintain price stability in imported essential items. This artificial price control would be inimical to the economy. The excessive money- printing by the government is also adding insult to injury, market analysts said.