Sri Lanka stocks hit new high

Sep 02, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan shares closed at a record high Friday, with investors expecting the bull run to continue in the short term with periodical profit taking, while forthcoming quarterly results will point at the bourse’s long term direction, brokers said. Brokers said 18 million Seylan Merchant Bank non-voting shares changed hands. It closed at 80 cents, up 10 cents.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed at 176.25 rupees, up 2.25, while National Development Bank closed at 190.75 rupees, down 1.00.

Sampath Bank closed at 179.50 rupees, up 8.50, while DFCC Bank closed at 153.00 rupees, up 1.00.

Nestles Lanka, a unit of Swiss based food company Nestles closed at 411.50 rupees, up 1.75, while Ceylon Tobacco, Sri Lankan unit of British American Tobacco closed at 185.00 rupees, up 2.50.

Celco Dialog Telekom, the Sri Lankan unit of Telekom Malaysia closed at 7.00 rupees, up 25 cents, while Sri Lanka Telecom closed 45.00 rupees, down 50 cents.

Up dated

The All Share Price Index (ASPI) was up 0.68 percent (20.41 points) to end at 3,018.01 while Milanka index liquid stocks gained 1.25 percent (42.00 points) to close at 3,394.86, according to provisional stock exchange figures.

Turnover was 1.07 billion rupees, with a year-to-date turnover of 89.2 billion rupees, the stock exchange said.

The ASPI has shot up 100.8 percent this year, while the Milanka is up 108.1 percent, a stock exchange statement said.

According to Bloomberg Newswire the Colombo Stock Exchange is the best performing market in Asia and the fourth best performing index in the world, the exchange said.

“Today is a day that goes down in history with the ASPI reaching 3,018 points and a market capitalization of 967 billion rupees reflecting the positive attitude of investors,” Thakshila Hulangamuwa, of stock brokering house Asha Phillip Securities said.

“The sustainability of the market will purely depend on the positive outcome of financial results in the forthcoming quarters as the market has adjusted to the post-war euphoria.”

Index heavy conglomerate John Keells Holdings (JKH) closed at 154.00 rupees, up 1.00, while Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka closed at 89.25 rupees, up 2.25.