Sri Lankan shares slide

Mar 17, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks continued to fall on low volumes Tuesday with investors sceptical of a quick recovery owing to concerns about the poor macro economic outlook and delays in ending the war, brokers said. “The high interest rates are still hurting investments in equity. That’s why the market volumes are still low,” said Balasuriya.

The All Share Price Index edged down 0.46 percent (7.49 points) to end at 1,612.33 while the more liquid Milanka was down 0.49 percent (8.24 points) to close at 1,671.66.

Turnover was 87.7 million rupees.

“The market sentiment continued to be weak as investors continue to look for direction from the macro front,” said Geeth Balasuriya of Acuity Stockbrokers.

“The market is waiting for the war to end.”

Ceylon Hospitals Limited (CHL) with 28.4 million rupees and Commercial Bank with 18 million were the top contributors to the day’s turnover.

Commercial Bank was down 1.75 rupees to close at 78.25, while CHL was up two rupees to close at 54.