Sri Lanka stocks tumble on selling to raise cash for IPOs

Mar 07, 2011(LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks fell sharply Monday with investors selling to make way for the forthcoming Initial Public Offerings, brokers said.

The All Share Price Index closed at 7,582.55, down 1.07 percent (82.17 points) while the Milanka Price Index of more liquid stocks closed at 7,582.55, down 0.19 percent (13.55 points), according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Turnover was 3.1 billion rupees. There were 56 gainers and 119 losers.

“Because of IPOs, people are selling,” Thilini Yatawara of Bartleet Mallory Stockbrokers said.

“There was a mix of institutional, high-net-worth and retail investor participation in the market trading.”

A flood of IPOs is expected on the Colombo bourse in the weeks ahead as companies move to capitalize on investor enthusiasm over the end of the island’s ethnic war and economic growth.

Nawaloka Hospitals closed at 4.50, up 0.20 cents with over 62 million shares done. There was a crossing of five million shares at 4.50 rupees.

A stock exchange filling said T.Senthilverl has acquired a 10.8 percent stake in the Nawaloka Hospitals including Monday’s transactions.

Lanka Securities said the overall market was pulled down by falls in prices of index heavy counters like John Keells Holdings, (down 4.60 rupees), Bukit Darah Company (down 62.30) and Carson Cumberbatch & Company (down 9.10).

Laugfs Gas voting shares closed at 53.10, down 0.10 cents and its non-yoting shares closed at 42.00, up 0.60 cents. There were four crossings, two at 44.00 rupees, one at 42.00 rupees and another at 42.50 rupees.

The Lanka Hospitals closed at 52.00, up 0.20 rupees with over 1.2 million shares done.

National Development Bank closed at 354.50, up 4.00 rupees with over 1.1 million shares done. There were three crossings with two of 500,000 and one of 91,000 done at 353.00 rupees.

Updated