Sri Lanka stocks close down 0.30-pct on profit taking

May 21, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks closed down Friday as retail investors took profits ahead of a possible technical correction in future, while heavy interest on John Keells Holdings (JKH) and Hayleys boosted turnover, brokers said. The All Share Price Index closed at 4,235.69, down 12.68 points, while the Milanka index of more liquid stocks fell 1.04 percent (49.85 points) to close at 4,738.73.

Turnover was 1.78 billion rupees, according to stock exchange provisional figures.

Retail investors took profits especially from midcap and high value shares, brokers said.

High interest on JKH and Hayleys helped turnover pass 1.5 billion rupees, brokers said.

JKH closed at 180.25 rupees, down 25 cents with over two million shares changing hands, and Hayleys closed at 295.00 rupees, up 10.00 with almost 700,000 shares traded, brokers said.

Aitken Spence closed at 1,550.25 rupees, down 50 cents, and Hemas Holdings closed at 139.00 rupees, down 1.25.

Commercial Bank closed at 248.50 rupees, down 50 cents, Hatton National Bank closed at 242.25 rupees, down 2.00, Nations Trust Bank closed flat at 37.25 rupees, Sampath Bank closed at 284.00 rupees, down 1.00 and Seylan Bank closed at 54.00 rupees, down 50 cents.

National Development Bank closed flat at 215.00 rupees, and DFCC Bank closed at 203.75 rupees, down 3.00.

Midcap stocks Asian Alliance Insurance closed at 53.25 rupees, down 5.50, Asian Hotels and Properties closed at 148.00 rupees, down 4.00, Ceylon Investment closed at 300.25, down 8.75 and Dipped Products closed at 111.25 rupees, down 3.25.