By Kayode Tokede
The equities market of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) traded flat on Thursday amid improved market turnover.
The All-Share Index closed at 28,344.04 basis points from 28,344.33 basis achieved on Wednesday and as a result, the Month-to-Date and Year-to-Date gain were unchanged at 5.6per cent.
Similarly, the market capitalisation remained unchanged at N14.81 trillion.
The equities market on Thursday moved 343.19 million shares worth N5.04 billion in 4,048 deals, just as market indices remained flat.
This represented a growth of 56.66 per cent when compared with 218.24 million shares valued at N3.14 billion exchanged in 3,896 deals on Wednesday.
Across sectors, the Consumer Goods (+0.4per cent) and Industrial Goods (+0.3 per cent) indices recorded gains, the Banking (-0.7 per cent) and Insurance (-0.5 per cent) indices declined, while the Oil & Gas index stayed flat.
Transactions in the shares of United Bank for Africa topped the activity chart with 92.87 million shares worth N613.56 million.
Zenith Bank followed with 67.23 million shares valued at N1.35 billion, while Guaranty Trust Bank accounted for 62.19 million shares worth N1.84 billion.
Transcorp traded 20.83 million shares valued at N13.03 million, while FBN Holdings transacted 19.63 million shares worth N121.63 million.
Eterna Plc drove the gainers’ chart in percentage terms, gaining 9.98 per cent to close at N5.29 per share.
Lafarge Africa followed with 4.03 per cent to close at N18.05, while Guinness grew by 3.23 per cent to N16 per share.
International Breweries increased by 3.19 per cent to close at N4.85, while PZ Cussons appreciated by 2.38 per cent to close at N4.30 per share.
Conversely, AIICO Insurance led the losers’ chart in percentage terms, losing 3.57 per cent to close at 81k per share.
GlaxoSmithKline trailed with a loss of 3.45 per cent to close at N5.60, while Fidson shed three per cent to close at N3.56 per share.
Africa Prudential dropped 2.81 per cent to close at N5.54, while Guaranty Trust Bank depreciated by 1.67 per cent to close at N29.50 per share.
“The equities market closed flat today. Going forward, we expect investor’s sentiments to be swayed by the search for real positive returns amidst a low interest rate environment.
“Nonetheless, we reiterate that this may be a great period to pick up some quality names with a medium to long term investment horizon,” analysts at InvestmentOne research said.