Sri Lanka stocks close up 0.3-pct

May 12, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks recovered slightly Thursday although trading was dull throughout the day, brokers said. Commercial Bank saw a crossing of 500,000 shares at 260 rupees per share. The main All Share Price Index closed at 7,300.82, up 0.28 percent (20.16 points) while the more liquid Milanka index rose 0.81 percent (54.20 points) to close at 6,776.69, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Turnover was 2.0 billion rupees.

Shares of Hatton National Bank rose 1.00 rupee to close at 220.00 rupees with reports that its board of directors had differed a decision to acquire a 10 percent stake of National Development Bank until HNB’s rights issue is over.

Free Lanka Capital Holdings fell below its IPO price to 4.90 rupees during trading but closed flat at the IPO price of 5.00 rupees.

Environmental Resources Investments, which has a heavy weighting on the Milanka index, rose 4.40 rupees to close at 71.00 rupees following speculation the markets regulator had decided to close an investigation into the firm.

But officials at the regulator rejected the speculation and said the investigation was not yet over.

An initial public offering by Expolanka group was oversubscribed within hours on the opening day today and closed in the afternoon.

Nation Lanka was the highest contributor to the day’s turnover and closed at 19.10 rupees, up 1.60 with 14 million (275 million rupees) shares done.

Trade in Central Finance contributed 236 million rupees to turnover.