Sri Lanka shares end up 1.6-pct

Apr 12, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares closed sharply higher Tuesday with the main index and turnover boosted by large transfers of shares in the Carsons group and gains in select high-valued stocks, brokers said. In other trades Tuesday, a million Commercial Bank shares changed hands in three crossings at 275 rupees a share generating 275 million rupees in turnover. Commercial Bank closed at 272.10 rupees, up 1.40, down from a day’s high of 273. The All Share Price Index closed at 7,574.86, up 1.62 percent (120.64 points) while the more liquid Milanka index was up just 0.60 percent (42.38 points) to close at 7,064.25, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Turnover was 4.5 billion rupees.

The market rose strongly in the morning and then levelled off. The bourse is closed for the rest of the week for traditional new year holidays.

Over 1.17 million The Bukit Darah shares went in a crossing at 1,203 rupees each, adding 1.4 billion rupees to the day’s turnover. The Bukit Darah closed at 1,245.90 rupees, up 46.40 rupees, after hitting a high of 1,295.

There was also a crossing of 1.4 million shares of Carson Cumberbatch at 662 rupees a share, adding 943 million rupees to turnover. Carson Cumberbatch closed at 679.20 rupees, up 7.20 rupees, having hit a high of 700.

Both the Carsons and Bukit Darah transactions were in connection with the share transfers to be executed for the voluntary offers to be made to minority shareholders of the four Malaysian palm oil firms in the group, the firms said in separate stock exchange filings.

In return, shareholders have been offered shares in Carson Cumberbatch and Bukit Darah.

Carsons group is mopping up minority stakes in its Malaysian oil palm units, Shalimar (Malay), Good Hope, Indo-Malay and Selinsing, as part of a revamp to prepare for bigger investments and expansion outside the region.

The four firms are to be brought under Goodhope Asia Holdings, the Singapore-based holding company set up to own and manage the group’s south east Asian oil palm investments.