Sri Lanka stocks end down 0.8-pct

June 23, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks closed 0.81 percent lower Thursday with heavy trading in Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide on news of buying by Sri Lanka Insurance-General fund, brokers said. Brokers said investors are now moving away from high market capitalization, low return shares to low market capitalization but high return penny stocks for speculative purposes.

The All Share Price Index closed at 6,871.68, down 0.81 percent (56.06 points) while the Milanka Price Index of more liquid stocks closed at 6,436.90, down 1.22 percent (79.56 points), according to stock exchange provisional figures.

The ASI close was the lowest since mid-January, 2011 and the MPI’s close was the lowest since mid-September, 2010.

Turnover was 1.8 billion rupees. There were 64 gainers and 158 losers. The market’s cash out was 1,016 million rupees while the cash in was only 726 million rupees.

Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation’s general fund brought 13 million shares or a 12.70 percent stake of Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide.
Sri Lanka Insurance is the holding company of eChanneling, which earlier brought 13 percent of Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide.

More and more small finance companies are joining the ranks of ‘hot stocks’ as the profit starved retail investors hang on to any floating straw, brokers said.

Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide voting shares closed at 9.30 rupees, up 60 cents or 6.90 rupees and more than 16 million shares changed hands generating 158 million rupees.

Blue Diamonds Jewellery Worldwide non-voting shares closed flat at 2.30 rupees and over 19 million shares were traded. eChanneling closed at 7 rupees, up 20 cents or 2.94 percent and over 8 million shares were traded.

East West Properties was the highest contributor for the third consecutive day to turnover and closed at 15.30, down 1.00 rupee or 6.13 percent. More than 12 million East West Properties shares were traded generating 209 million rupees.

Thursday’s crossing were 454,100 shares of Distilleries at 180 rupees, 130,000 shares of John Keels Holdings at 285 rupees, 1,267,200 of Aitken Spence Hotels at 75 rupees, 01 million shares of Renuka Holdings at 68 rupees and 26,460 shares of Selinsing at 1,080 rupees.

Shalimar closed at 907.70 rupees, up 247.50 rupees or 37.49 percent. Asiri Central closed at 248 rupees, up 32.70 or 15.19 percent.

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