…As FG is to complete dualisation of highways in North-East with Sukuk Bonds***
The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) profited from a beehive of activities on its trading floor last week with market capitalisation appreciating by N334 billion following bargain hunting, despite political risks.
Specifically, the market capitalisation which opened at N11.424 trillion gained N334 billion or 2.92 per cent to close at N11.758 trillion.
Also, the All-Share Index rose by 893.56 points or 2.92 per cent to close at 31,529.92 compared with its 30,636.36 opening figure.
Analysts who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) attributed the growth to positive sentiments ahead of 2018 earnings season and low interest rates in the United States of America.
Prof. Uche Uwaleke, Head of Banking and Finance Department, Nasarawa State University Keffi, said the growth was due to positive sentiments regarding expected corporate results.
Uwaleke explained that investors were taking position in the stock market in anticipation of enhanced dividend, especially the banking stocks.
He said the rally, which began three weeks ago, was interrupted by the Chief Justice of Nigeria saga and heightened political tension.
“Last week has been politically uneventful. This week’s performance will be mixed and will most likely close lower than last week on account of the polls,” Uwaleke said.
Mr Ambrose Omordion, the Chief Operating Officer, InvestData Ltd., said foreign investors were taking position in the debt market and the equities market due to low interest yield in the United States.
Omordion said investors were taking advantage of hight interest rate and yields in the bond market and equities market to offset lower yields abroad, after US Federal Reserve Bank signaled it would not increase rates.
He added that expected positive earnings reporting season and big expectations from the banking stocks contributed to the market growth.
Analysts at Cordros Capital said foreign and domestic players shunned the looming election risk as the Nigeria’s equity market returned to a cheerful mood.
They, however, urged investors to trade cautiously amidst uncertainties ahead of the elections.
“Looking ahead, we continue to guide investors to trade cautiously amidst brewing political jitters ahead 2019 elections, and the absence of a positive market trigger.
“However, we believe positive macroeconomic fundamentals will drive recovery post-election,” they said.
NAN reports that breakdown of the price movement chart showed that Regency Assurance led the gainers’ table in percentage terms, gaining 19.05 per cent or 4k to close at 25k per share.
Dangote Flour Mills followed with a gain of 18.10 per cent or N1.05 to close at N6.85, while Guaranty Trust Bank added 14.69 per cent or N4.95 to close at N38.65 per share.
Conversely, Royal Exchange Assurance topped the losers’ chart in percentage terms with a loss of 13.33 per cent or 4k to close at 26k per share.
Guinea Insurance trailed with 13.04 per cent or 3k to close at 20k, while Champion Breweries dropped by 10 per cent or 18k to close at N1.62 per share.
NAN reports that a total turnover of 1.89 billion shares worth N26.88 billion were traded by investors in 19,213 deals.
This was against a turnover of 1.45 billion shares valued at N14.79 billion exchanged in 19,318 deals in the previous week.
The financial Services Industry remained the most active in volume terms, accounting for 1.49 billion shares worth N19.72 billion traded in 12,581 deals.
The sector contributed 79.10 per cent and 73.37 per cent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.
The consumer goods sector followed with an exchange of 144.43 million shares worth N4.55 billion traded in 2,484 deals.
The third place was conglomerates industry with a turnover of 143.32 million shares worth N220.05 million in 998 deals.
Meanwhile, the Federal Government says part of the N100billion proceeds from the Sovereign Sukuk bonds will be used to complete the ongoing dualisation of five sections of Kano- Maiduguri highways.
The Director of Highways, North-East, Federal Ministry of Power,Works and Housing, Alhaji Mohammad Rufai made the disclosure on Sunday in Jakana , Borno state, while inspecting the road projects.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that section two of the project, with a 142 Kilo Meter (KM) length covers Dutse-Kwanar Huguma in Jigawa state state.
The section three, with a 106.341km is located between Azare-Potiskum axis in Yobe state.
Similarly, the section four projects are situated along Damaturu-Maiduguri with 145.109km, while the section five corridors are located between Potiskum-Damaturu with 102.075km length.
The projects differently executed by Messers CCECC Nigeria Ltd, Mothercat Ltd, Setraco Nigeria Ltd, and CGC Nigeria Ltd are in significant stages of completion.
Rufai, who inspected the road projects, in company of Federal controllers of works in the states said he was satisfied with the performance of the contractors handling the projects.
According to him, the contractors have been executing the projects based on schedule of the contract terms.
“The quality of work on the road is okay and the progress is on schedule, some of the contractors have even gone ahead of the scheduled program.
“So, we are willing to engage them again, if the opportunity comes up.’
The director attributed the success of the projects to improved security situation in the region and provision of Sukuk funding by the Federal Government.
“Sukuk funding has actually helped a lot because the contractors were able to push the work to this extent because of sukuk fund.
“The second sukuk fund will be used to complete the road projects.
“Government is doing what it ought to do, recently, sukuk released N100 billion for the second phase and modalities are being worked out to deploy the funds.”
At the section five site of the project, Alhaji Ibrahim Barde,the village Head of Alaraba in Portiskum emirate council told NAN that the community was grateful to the federal government for dualising the roads.
According to him, the dualisation has so far increased the economic fortune of the community through job creation and establishment of new business.
” We are grateful to the federal government for this project, we are the beneficiary of this road, in fact, my domain has 38km of Potiskum-Damaturu road.
“We are happy for the development, we thank the federal government.”
He said the Emir of Portiskum, Alhaji Umaru, Bubaran was happy for the project, noting that they have being working harmoniously with the contractors handling the project.
Mr Ayuba Haruna, one of the engineers also told NAN that it was cherry that a significant number of workers on the site were indigenous engineers.
“We have more than 20 local engineers working on the site and the project Chief Engineer is a local engineer.
” The Chinese engineers do the supervision, we are the people doing the field work, the project has created many direct and indirect jobs for the people,” Haruna said.