Sri Lankan stocks close 0.81-pct up

Feb 17, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks recovered Wednesday on gains in the prices of shares with a heavy weighting on the indices like Distilleries, Sampath Bank, Aitken Spence and Environmental Resources, brokers said. The All Share Price Index closed at 3,721.12, up 0.81 percent (30.08) points while the Milanka index of more liquid shares gained 1.80 percent (75.50 points) to close at 4,269.25.

Turnover was 1.69 billion rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

“The market opened positive, but investor sentiment was low,” Rakshitha Perera, research manager at Bartleet Mallory Stockbrokers said.

“With most December quarter financial results already released, investors should concentrate on future prospects and invest in fundamentally sound stocks that have a clear strategic direction.”

Environmental Resources Investments closed at 246.00 rupees, up 52.25. Its 0000 warrants closed at 154.75 rupees, up 38.50 and 0001 warrants closed at 156.50 rupees, up 40.50.

Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka closed at 117.00 rupees, up 1.25 with 1.14 million shares changing hands at 120 rupees a share in a private deal, and John Keells Holdings closed at 168.00 rupees, up 25 cents.

Brokers said 1.27 million Sampath Bank shares traded at 220.00 rupees per share in a private deal. It closed at 220.25 rupees, up 8.00.

Commercial Bank closed at 187.00 rupees, down 50 cents, Hatton National Bank closed at 173.50 rupees, down 50 cents and Seylan Bank closed at 44.00 rupees, down 75 cents.

Aitken Spence, a diversified company with business interest in hotels and power generation sectors closed at 1,250 rupees, up 20.00.

MTD Walkers closed at 407.50 rupees, 92.50 on thin trading volumes, brokers said.

Touchwood Investments, a retailer favourite closed at 132.50 rupees, up 13.75.

Sri Lanka Telecom closed at 40.00 rupees, down 25 cents, and Dialog Telekom, a unit of Telekom Malaysia closed flat at 7.00 rupees.