Sri Lanka stocks close lower on profit taking

June 23, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares extended losses Tuesday closing down 0.4 percent as retail investors took profits on blue chip banks and diversified groups, brokers said,

The benchmark Colombo All Share Price Index closed down 0.44 percent (10.84 points) to end at 2,436.36 while the Milanka index of liquid stocks fell 1.02 percent (28.16 points) to close at 2,730.97, according to provisional stock exchange data.

Turnover was 762.2 million rupees.

“There was retail profit taking which brought prices down,” Geeth Balasuriya of Acuity Stockbrokers said.

“However active buying during late afternoon propped the indices up.”

Index heavy conglomerate John Keells Holdings which has business interest in transport, property development, financial services, food processing and retail businesses closed at 135.25 rupees, down 1.75 rupees.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed at 137.00 rupees, down 3.00 rupees.

National Development Bank closed at 153.00 rupees, down 1.00, while DFCC Bank, closed at 137.00 rupees, down 3.00 rupees.

“We usually see some market volatility towards the end of the month as retailers try to close their positions,” said Balasuriya.

“We can expect the market to turn positive towards the latter part of this week.”

Index heavy celco Dialog Telekom, a unit of Telekom Malaysia, closed flat at 5.25 rupees, while fixed access Sri Lanka Telecom closed at 49.50 rupees, down 50 cents.

Distilleries Company of Sri Lankan, a unit of Stassens Group closed at 84.75 rupees, down one, while diversified Hayleys closed at 130.00 rupees, down 75 cents.