Sri Lanka stocks up 1.51-pct, plantation stocks rally

Feb 01, 2010 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks surged Monday as retail investors were seen betting heavily on plantation stocks, while heavy institutional interest on John Keells Holdings (JKH) pushed turnover to almost 3.0 billion rupees, brokers said. The benchmark All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed at 3,691.39 points, up 54.98 points, while the Milanka index of more liquid stocks gained 1.85 percent (77.22 points), to close at 4,259.01 points.

Turnover was 2.96 billion rupees.

“Investors took positions in selected counters with a medium term perspective in mind,” Thakshila Hulangamuwa, vice president at stock brokering form Asha Phillip Securities said.

“Plantations dominated today’s gains, while John Keells pushed up turnover to almost 3.0 billion rupees.”

Watawala Plantations closed at 130.00 rupees, up 11.00, Udapussellawa Plantations closed at 35.25 rupees, up 3.50 on thin volume trading.

Talawakelle Tea Estates closed at 33.25 rupees, up 6.25, Namunukula Plantations closed at 33.50 rupees, up 4.50, Malwatte Valley Plantations closed at 49.75 rupees, up 5.25 and Balangoda Plantations closed at 31.50 rupees, up 2.75.

Conglomerate JKH closed at 176.25 rupees, down 25 cents, with over 6.1 million shares changing hands, while Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka, a unit of tea company Stassens Group closed at 119.75 rupees, up 2.25.

Commercial Bank closed at 195.25 rupees, up 5.00, Hatton National Bank closed at 176.00 rupees, down 1.00, Sampath Bank closed at 230.00 rupees, up 10.00 and Seylan Bank closed at 48.75 rupees, up 2.25.

DFCC Bank closed at 175.00 rupees, up 3.25, and National Development Bank closed at 210.75 rupees, up 4.00.

Dialog Telekom, a celco, closed flat at 6.75 rupees, and Sri Lanka Telecom, a fixed line operator closed flat at 42.00 rupees.