Sri Lankan stocks end losing streak

Chandi Dharmaratne

May 14, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lankan share prices on Monday edged up after nine straight days in the red, largely driven by buying interest in oil palm stocks, brokers said. Monday’s turnover was dominated by conglomerate John Keells Holdings PLC, which has investments in leisure, financial services, IT and transport. JKH, the largest capitalised stock, saw its share price edge up 10-cents to 197.00 rupees on trades of 237,165.

Commercial Bank of Ceylon PLC, one of the island’s most profitable banks, saw its counter gain 60-cents to 105.00 rupees on trades of 359,005. A parcel of 234,000 Commercial Bank shares also during mid-day trade at 104.50 rupees.

Dialog Axiata PLC, the island’s biggest mobile phone operator, saw its share price move up 20-cents to 5.40 rupees on trades of 4.52 million shares.

In the currency markets, the rupee was quoted at 128.60/90 against the US dollar during mid-day trading, dealers said. The greenback opened at 128.30/60.

In the bond market, two-year bond maturing on March 01, 2012, was quoted at 13.20/40 unchanged.

Three-year bond July 15, 2015 dropped to 13.70/90 percent from Friday’s close of 14.00/20 percent.

The four-year bond August 01, 2015, still quoted 13.90/14.20 percent, the same as last week. Colombo’s broader All Share Price Index crept up 0.15 percent or 7.75 points to close at 5,116.31 while the liquid Milanka Price Index edged down 0.04 percent or 2.00 points to end at 4,608.86, according to figures published by the Colombo Stock Exchange.

Monday’s turnover was a low 286.6 million rupees compared to last week’s average of 400.0 million rupees.

The Carson’s group managed The Bukit Darah PLC, which grows and trades oil palms, saw 1,059 shares change hands on Monday, but the counter closed 4.70 rupees low at 854.90 rupees.

The Shalimar (Malay) Estate company Limited, who also trades in oil palms, saw its share price move up 21.50 rupees to 899.50 rupees.