ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lankan stocks closed lower Monday with block deals dominating and continued foreign selling in companies with a heavy weighting on the indices while the rupee also ended weaker against the US dollar, brokers and dealers said.
The All Share Price Index of the Colombo stock exchange fell 66.29 points (1.07%) to close at 6,128.34 while the more liquid SP SL20 index ended at 3,348.28, down 40.60 points (1.20%). Turnover was Rs756 million.
Brokers First Capital Equities said it was the main index was the lowest in almost 15 months and Monday’s fall the highest drop in two years, witth the main index dragged down by falls in John Keells Holdings and Distilleries Corp.
Brokers Asia Securities said crossings or off-the floor negotiated deals accounted for 77% of the turnover.
There were three deals in Commercial Bank which closed at Rs122.70, down 30 cents (0.24%), and one each in John Keells Holdings, which fell Rs2.80 (1.9%) to Rs144.70, Dialog Axiata, which ended at Rs14.00, down 20 cents (1.41%) and Hatton National Bank, which closed at Rs223.20, down Rs1.80 (0.80%).
Foreign investors were net sellers of Rs311.2 million worth of shares, Asia Securities said.
Estimated net foreign buying was mainly in HNB while net foreign selling was highest in Commercial Bank.
The rupee closed slightly weaker against the US dollar at 158.40/50 from Friday’s close of Rs158.20/40, dealers said.
(COLOMBO, July 02, 2018)