Sri Lanka shares end up 0.99-pct

Feb 02, 2011(LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks closed up Wednesday with active trading seen in the food and beverage sector as well as in index heavy stocks like John Keells Holding, brokers said.

The All Share Price Index closed at 7,262.26, up 0.99 percent (71.49 points) while the Milanka Price Index of more liquid stocks closed at 7,150.94, up 0.42 percent (29.66 points) according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Turnover was 4.1 billion rupees.

“There was more retail investor participation in the market than institutional,” a broker said.

Actively traded food and beverage stocks like Bairaha closed at 485.20, up 21.40 rupees and Grain Elevators closed at 240.80, up 30.20 rupees.

Three Acre Farms closed at 218.20, up 34.70 rupees with 1.5 million shares changing hands.

Haycarb closed at 179.00, down 3.50. High charcoal prices and a stronger rupee have squeezed margins in the company, cutting December 2010 quarter net profit by 28 percent to 89 million rupees, a stock exchange filling said.

Hayleys MGT Knitting closed at 31.90, down 0.10 cents. The company has made a loss of 626 million rupees in the December 2010 quarter following provisioning after an audit inquiry into a fraud, a statement said.

Index heavy JKH closed at 296.70, up 2.50 rupees and Carsons Cumberbatch closed at 556.40, up 11.00 rupees.