Sri Lanka shares end down 1.6-pct

Feb 27, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lankan share prices fell Monday, ending a seven-day rally, with turnover also lower and sharp fluctuations in some illiquid stocks, brokers said. The main All Share Price Index closed down 1.61 percent (89.71 points) at 5,476.59, while the more liquid Milanka index fell 1.03 percent (49.39 points) to close at 4,753.39.

Turnover was 616 million rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Brokers have said trading was lower because they were still getting used to a new trading system commissioned last Friday. Share prices last closed higher on February 15 following a nine-day slide.

Many listed firms have been reporting better quarterly earnings but business sentiment has been hit by rising interest rates and a depreciation of the rupee.

On Monday, index heavyweight John Keells Holdings closed at 175 rupees, down 1.10.

Serendib Land was the day’s biggest loser, its price down by half with just one share traded, ending at 1,250 rupees.

Selinsing was the second biggest loser, down by 27 percent or 404.90 rupees to 1,095.10 rupees with a single share traded.

PC House was the most actively traded stock, closing at 10.90 rupees, up 40 cents, followed by Environmental Resources Investments which ended at 20.30 rupees, down two.

PC Pharma was the top gainer, closing at 50.40 rupees, up 10.40 rupees followed by Mercantile Shipping which closed at 299 rupees, up 74 on a single transaction.