Sri Lankan stocks close up 0.96-pct

July 23, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks recovered Friday on price gains on selected blue chip and midcap stocks on low volume trading, while Hotel Reefcomber shares continued to fall after the Amaya Leisure sell-out, brokers said.

The All Share Price Index closed at 4,895.51, up 0.96 percents while the more liquid Milanka index fell 0.82 percent (44.86 points) to close at 5,545.13.

Turnover was 2.0 billion rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Brokers said there was high interest on index heavy Environmental Resources Investments (ERI) and John Keells Holdings (JKH).

ERI closed at 107.50 rupees, up 4.00 with 2.24 million shares traded, while JKH closed at 230.00 rupees, up 1.75 with almost a million shares changing hands.

Hotel Reefcomber which was sold off by Amaya Leisure on Thursday closed at 4.10 rupees, down 10 cents with over 4.7 million shares traded.

Trading volumes on some of the index heavy top gainers were relatively low, brokers said.

Aitken Spence closed at 1,700.00 rupees, up 50.00 with 6,400 shares traded.

Amana Takaful, the insurance unit of the Amana Islamic finance group, was actively traded, closing at 3.40, up 10 cents.

The group has announced it is getting into commercial banking with a new unit Amana Bank which had raised 3.2 billion rupees in capital through a private placement.

Aviva NDB Insurance closed at 222.50 rupees, up 2.50 with 2,000 shares changing hands, Cargills (Ceylon) was up 232.25 rupees, up 5.00 with 75,100 shares traded and Carsons Cumberbatch closed at 568.75 rupees, up 8.50 with 18,700 shares traded.

Ceylon Guardian Investment Trust closed at 716.75 rupees, up 16.75 with 1,200 shares changing hands and Ceylon Tea Services closed at 598.00 rupees, up 19.75 with 800 shares traded.

Chemanex closed at 140.75 rupees, up 7.25 on 14,700 shares traded, and Ceylon Tobacco Company closed at 318.75 rupees, up 8.75 rupees on 400 shares traded, Colombo Fort Investments closed at 135.75 rupees, up 4.75 rupees on 1,300 shares traded.

Haycarb closed at 173.25 rupees, up 4.75 with 7,500 shares traded, and Sampath Bank closed at 360.00 rupees, up 12.25 with 318,300 shares traded.