Sri Lankan shares dip

Feb 11, 2009 (LBO) – Sri Lankan stocks had mixed fortunes on Wednesday as high value stocks like Bukit Darah and Carson Cumberbatch dragged the market down on low volume transactions while selected blue chips gained, brokers said.

The All Share Price Index ended down 0.22 percent (3.95 points) at 1,761.93 while the more liquid Milanka gained 0.52 percent (9.69 points) to close at 1,884.69.

Turnover was 92.2 million rupees.

Carson Cumberbatch, the eighth largest company on the bourse by market capitalization, lost four rupees to close at 130 rupees, while Bukit Darah the 14th largest listed company lost 68.25 rupees to close at 831.25.

“Apart from investor interest in a few selected stocks such as John Keells Holdings and Lanka Cement, the overall market sentiment was weak. The market’s reaction was minimal to the rate cuts yesterday,” said Geeth Balasuriya of Acuity Stockbrokers.

“Investors are continuing to take a cautious approach amidst earnings woes and macro uncertainties.”

There were two local to local crossings amounting to 90,000 each of Ceylinco Insurance shares (at 175 rupees), which contributed 36.5 million rupees to the day’s turnover.

Ceylinco Insurance gained 1.25 rupees to close at 175.

Sri Lanka Telecom closed at 36 rupees flat, while Dialog Telekom also closed 5.25 flat.

Commercial Bank gained 2.75 rupees, to close at 93. Lanka Cement was down 50 cents, and closed at 14 rupees.

Nawaloka Hospitals was down 10 cents, to close at two rupees.

Foreign buying was at 10.9 million rupees, while foreign selling was at 1.6 million.