Sri Lanka stocks close 1.16-pct up, foreigners keep selling

Mar 26, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks closed up Friday on big price gains on blue chip stocks, while high interest on John Keells Holdings (JKH) helped turnover levels to pass a billion rupees, brokers said. Hayleys closed at 225.50 rupees, up 50 cents, and Hemas Holdings closed at 121.00 rupees, up 3.25.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed at 198.75 rupees, up 3.75, Hatton National Bank closed at 183.75 rupees, up 3.50, Sampath Bank closed at 227.75 rupees, up 10.50 and Seylan Bank closed at 47.25 rupees, up 1.25.

Environmental Resources Investments ordinary voting shares closed at 241.75 rupees, up 25 cents. Its 0000 warrants closed at 154.25 rupees, up 3.50, and 0001 warrants closed at 154.50 rupees, up 2.00. The All Share Price Index closed at 3,773.76, up 43.33 points, while the Milanka index of more liquid shares gained 1.25 percent (54.17 points) to close at 4,391.22.

Turnover was 1.1 billion rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Foreigner bought 46.9 million worth of shares and sold 427 million shares, resulting in a net outflow of 380.1 million rupees, brokers said.

“JKH moving up eight rupees in morning trade edged the market up,” Rakshitha Perera, research manager at Bartleet Mallory Stockbrokers said.

“After the election we expect market sentiment to improve.”

JKH, a conglomerate closed at 186.00 rupees, up 8.00 with almost 905,600 shares changing hands at 185 rupees per share, brokers said.

At the end of trade Tuesday JKH’s market capitalization passed 114 billion rupees, brokers said.