Sri Lankan shares down on profit taking, volumes dip

Oct 09, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares fell Friday, as investors took profits on selected counters, brokers said. Hatton National Bank closed at 173.00 rupees, up 1.00, and Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed at 180.00 rupees, down 1.50.

National Development Bank closed at 195.00 rupees, down 25 cents, and DFCC Bank closed at 153.00 rupees, up 50 cents.

The All Share Price Index closed down 0.17 percent (5.39 points) to end at 3,115.34, while the Milanka Index of more liquid stocks lost 0.67 percent (23.46 points) to close at 3,504.34, according to provisional stock exchange data.

Turnover was 491.3 million rupees.

“The market has taken a breather with the exception of a few stocks favored by retailers, while the others are going through some profit taking,” Thakshila Hulangamuwa, vice president at stock brokering house Asha Phillip Securities said.

Dialog Telekom, a unit of Telekom Malaysia closed at 7.75 rupees, down 25 cents on almost 1.1 million shares traded, while fixed line operator Sri Lankan Telecom closed at 47.50 rupees, up 50 cents.

Analysts and brokers have said a market correction is likely in the near future.

Lanka Cement closed flat at 22.35 with 1.1 million shares traded, and Touchwood Investments closed at 91.50 rupees, down 1.00.

Conglomerate John Keells Holdings closed at 153.75 rupees, up 75 cents, while index heavy Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka closed at 92.00 rupees, up 1.00.