Sri Lanka shares held up by gains in large cap stocks

Oct 29, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares ended marginally firmer Wednesday, held up by gains in highly capitalized stocks, but sentiment remained weak as the outlook for economic and company growth was gloomy, brokers said.

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The All Share Price Index edged up 0.51 percent (8.82 points) to 1,749.26 while the Milanka rose 1.14 percent (22.02 points) to 1,957.27. Turnover was 241.6 million rupees.

Mohand Thangarajah of First Guardian Equities said trading was listless with the inactivity masked by movements in a few highly capitalised stocks.

John Keells Holdings, the second most actively traded stock, edged up one rupee to close at 64.25 rupees with over 2.5 million shares traded, which accounted for a large chunk of turnover.

Sri Lanka Telecom led the gains, recovering some lost ground to end up 3.68 percent (1.25 rupees) at 35.25 rupees with 25,400 shares done.

Dialog Telekom was flat at seven rupees with 209,100 shares traded.

Brokers said an overnight Tamil Tiger air strike on a power plant in the capital Colombo, which caused little damage, did not appear to have affected the market.