Sri Lankan stocks end weaker

March 05, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares ended weaker Friday Thursday as more firms reported losses or sharply lower profits with trading volumes thin as investors stayed away from the market, brokers said.

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The All Share Price Index eased 0.78 percent (12.77 points) to end at 1,616.06 while the more liquid Milanka fell 1.11 percent (18.78 points) to close at 1,668.04.

Turnover was 74 million rupees.

Market heavyweight Dialog Telekom lost 10 cents to end at 4.60.

Overseas Realty (Ceylon), a property firm that is having difficulty in selling apartments in a new high rise condominium project under construction, fell nine percent or 75 cents to close at 7.50 rupees.

Lanka Cement was the most acively traded stock but also suffered the second sharpest fall, ending down 18 percent or two rupees at nine rupee.

Most share prices of listed firms of the Ceylinco group, whose chairman Lalith Kotelawala has been remanded on fraud charges, weakened.

But Seylan Bank, in which Kotelawala has promised to sell his stake to raise funds to repay depositors of an unlisted firm that collapsed, was unchanged at Rs32.75.