Sri Lankan stocks close 0.7-pct lower

Jan 12, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lanka stocks closed down Tuesday as index heavy banking sector pulled the market down, while trading in conglomerate John Keells Holdings (JKH) boosted turnover, brokers said.

National Development Bank closed at 204.25 rupees, 3.00 down, and DFCC bank closed at 168.00 rupees, down 1.75. The All Share Price Index closed at 3,490.19, down 0.73 percent (25.59 points) while the more liquid Milanka index lost 0.11 percent (4.57 points) to close at 4,005.89.

Turnover was 1.3 billion rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

“Apart from the blocks of JKH shares that led the market turnover, retail participation was dominant in today’s trading,” Thakshila Hulangamuwa, vice president at stock brokering firm Asha Phillip Securities said.

“Further three warrants issues and a rights issue for Environmental Resources Holdings was announced today.”

The firm’s 000 warrant closed at 74.25 rupees, up 17.75, while its 001 warrant closed at 74.75 rupees, up 17.50. Environmental Resources Holdings voting shares closed at 98.00 rupees, up 21.00.

Index heavy stocks JKH closed flat at 179.00 rupees with 1.645 million shares changing hands, and Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka closed at 117.50 rupees, up 75 cents.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed at 194.75 rupees, down 1.75, Hatton National Bank closed at 174.00 rupees, down 50 cents, Sampath Bank closed at 219.75 rupees, down 2.25, and Seylan Bank closed at 39.75 rupees, down 50 cents.