Sri Lankan stocks close up 2.17-pct

Minister appoints Dr Swaminathan to IPACSL as Chairperson

Sept 17, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks continued to rally to break 6,400 point mark Friday, from strong gains across the board, while strong buying interest on selected midcap stocks pushed turnover up, brokers said.

The All Share Price Index closed at 6,477.09, up 2.10 percent (133.38 points), while the more liquid Milanka index rose 2.72 percent (179.74) to close at 6,795.77, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Turnover was 3.4 billion rupees.

“Buying interest continued on fundamentally sound midcap stocks,” Nikita Tissera, research manager at stock brokering firm SC Securities said.

“However it will be interesting to see how the market will react to the new price cap formula the (securities) regulator plans to implement.”

In recent weeks there has been heavy buying interest on selected midcap shares, brokers said.

Colombo Land and Development Company closed at 16.40 rupees, up 1.10 (9.52 percent) with 2.25 million shares traded, and Dunamis Capital closed at 14.20 rupees, up 90 cents (6.77 percent) with almost 1.7 million shares changing hands.

John Keells Hotels closed at 21.70 rupees, up 1.70 (8.5 percent, while Merchant Bank of Sri Lanka closed at 53.90 rupees, up 4.90 (10 percent) and Pan Asia Banking Corporation closed at 52.90 rupees, up 4.80 (9.9 percent) with 1.823 million shares traded, brokers said.

John Keells Holdings, an index heavy conglomerate closed at 289.20 rupees, down 80 cents (0.28 percent), while Aitken Spence closed at 2,990.00 rupees, down 6.30 (0.21 percent), Hayleys closed at 349.90 rupees, up 90 cents (0.26 percent) and Hemas Holdings closed at 49.20 rupees, up 4.20 (9.33 percent), brokers said.