… As Oil prices ease on profit taking***
The Nigerian equities market began trading for the week on Monday still on negative mood with 0.27 per cent loss due to renewed profit taking.
Specifically, the All-Share Index which opened for the week at 38,648.91 shed 103.61 points or 0.27 per cent to close at 38,545.30.
Accordingly, month-to-date gain moderated to 0.3 per cent, while year-to-date loss increased to 4.3 per cent.
In the same vein, the market capitalisation lost N54 billion or 0.27 per cent to close at N20.089 trillion from N20.143 trillion achieved on Friday.
The market loss was driven by price depreciation in large and medium capitalised stocks, amongst which are Fidson Healthcare, Lasaco Assurance, Oando, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated and Dangote Sugar Refinery.
However, the market sentiment, as measured by market breadth, was positive with 18 gainers against 17 laggards.
Meyer drove the gainers’ table in percentage terms with 8.77 per cent to close at 62k per share.
Champion Breweries trailed with 6.06 per cent to close at N2.10, while Julius Berger improved by 4.71 per cent to close at N20 per share.
Regency Alliance Insurance rose by four per cent to close at 52k, while Ikeja Hotel gained 3.19 per cent to close at 97k per share.
Conversely, Fidson Healthcare led the losers’ chart in percentage terms, dropping 9.80 per cent to close at N4.60 per share.
Lasaco Assurance came second with 9.33 per cent to close at N1.36, while FTN Cocoa Processors lost 9.09 per cent to close at 30k per share.
Mutual Benefits Assurance dipped 8.89 per cent to close at 41k, while Cornerstone Insurance shed 5.17 per cent to close at 55k per share.
The total volume of shares transacted declined by 5.18 per cent with an exchange of 209.21 million shares valued at N1.76 billion in 3,390 deals.
This was in contrast with 220.64 million shares worth N2.53 billion traded in 2,952 deals on Friday.
Transactions in the shares of Access Bank topped the activity chart with 22.72 million shares valued at N193.99 million.
AXA Mansard Insurance followed with 16.70 million shares worth N15.05 million, while Zenith Bank traded 16.15 million shares valued at N384.58 million.
Mutual Benefits Assurance sold 14.69 million shares worth N6.04 million, while Chams transacted 13.48 million shares worth N2.70 million.
In a related development, Oil prices fell slightly on Tuesday amid profit taking after rallying the previous day on hopes for a quick recovery in demand in the U.S. and Europe.
Brent crude futures for August settlement dropped 47 cents, or 0.6 per cent, to 74.43 dollars per barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures for July delivery were down 50 cents, or 0.7 per cent, at 72.62 dollars a barrel.
Brent jumped 1.9 per cent and WTI climbed 2.8 per cent in the previous session.
Both benchmarks have risen for the past four weeks on hopes of economic revival and expected pick-up in summer travel on the back of increasing vaccination coverage.
Meanwhile, expectations for an early return of Iranian crude faded after Ebrahim Raisi, an ultraconservative cleric who’s generally hostile toward the West, emerged as the winner of June 18 elections.
He’s due to take over from Rowhani in mid-August.
BofA Global Research raised its Brent crude price forecasts for the year 2021 and 2022, saying the global oil market will continue to be undersupplied.
Goldman Sachs is expecting firmer oil prices moving forward.
The American Petroleum Institute is due to release its latest estimates of U.S. crude oil supply data later in the day. –