Sri Lanka stocks rally loses steam

Nov 29, 2011 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s main share index closed slightly weaker Tuesday after a morning rally on the back of Monday’s surge in prices lost steam on profit-taking, brokers said. The main All Share Price Index fell 0.04 percent (2.16 points) to 6,020.08, while the more liquid Milanka index rose 0.26 percent (13.39 points) to close at 5,246.62, according to stock exchange figures.

Turnover was 1.7 billion rupees.

Shares had shot up 3.6 percent Monday on optimism a meeting between stockbrokers and President Mahinda Rajapaksa could yield a relaxation of credit rules and price restrictions.

On Tuesday, Entrust Securities was the day’s highest gainer, closing at 40 rupees, up 20 from its reference price of 20 rupees at which it began trading.

The stock hit a high of 55.50 rupees with over three million shares traded, generating the second highest turnover.

There were two crossings or off-market private deals, one of 500,000 shares at 51 rupees each and the other of a million shares at 50 rupees each.

Sinhaputhra Finance was the second highest gainer, closing at 120 rupees, up 18 on a sole trade of 100 shares.

John Keells Holdings closed at 174.30 rupees, down 70 cents, after hitting a day’s high of 177 rupees.

HVA Foods was the most actively traded stock, closing at 39.20 rupees, down 1.60 rupees, with over 3.9 million shares done. It hit a high of 44.40 rupees.

East West Properties was also heavily traded, closing at 26.90 rupees, up 30 cents, and hitting a high of 30.90.

Colombo Land & Development Company was also actively traded, closing at 51.60 rupees, down 2.10, after touching 58.50.