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Sri Lanka shares close higher on Expolanka, Lanka IOC

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka shares gained on Wednesday mainly pushed up by index heavy Expolanka and Lanka IOC but overall market moved on thin volumes as investors await confirmation from the IMF program.

“… from a broader market perspective the sentiments of the investors are on the sidelines as they expect bad corporate earnings and more concrete information on IMF fund that’s being programmed,” an analyst said.

The main All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed 0.44 percent or 38.49 points higher at 8,870.63.

“Bourse reverted to green during today’s session as both ASPI and S&P SL20 indices recorded a thin gain on optimistic investor sentiment with recent developments on the economic front. ,” First Capital Market Research said in its daily note.

The market witnessed a turnover of 3.5 billion rupees, higher than this year’s daily average turnover of 2.9 billion rupees.

First Capital said Expolanka contributed 47 percent to the market turnover following the buy back of 7.0Mn shares by the parent company through an off-board transaction at LKR 210.0 per share.

Expolanka closed 0.4 percent higher at 207.5 rupees a shares and generated a turnover of 1.66 billion rupees.
Analyst previously said although the market is traded in green, the overall market was flat as it was waiting for more news on key catalysts such as the IMF.

The market saw a net foreign inflow of 1.5 million rupees. The total net foreign inflow stood at 23.7 billion rupees so far for this year.

The Paris Club group of creditor nations has proposed a 10-year debt moratorium on Sri Lankan debt and 15 years of debt restructuring as a formula to resolve the island nation’s prevailing currency crisis.

The government is in discussions with Asian Development Bank (ADB) and World Bank to get loans of 1.9 billion US dollars after a reform program with the International Monetary Fund is approved.

A policy loan now being discussed with the World Bank may bring around 700 million US dollars, Coomaraswamy told a business forum organized by CT CLSA Securities, a Colombo-based brokerage.

The Asian Development Bank may also give around 1.2 billion US dollars most of which will be budget support, he said.

In the last few sessions, market gained after the Central bank governor said interest rates should eventually ease despite the fears of a domestic debt restructuring as inflation falls, increased liquidity in dollar markets, and the inter-bank liquidity improves.

The more liquid index S&P SL20 closed 0.74 percent or 20.75 points higher at 2,840.56.
So far in December ASPI gained 2.5 percent.

The ASPI gained 0.5 percent in November after losing 13.4 percent in October.

It has lost 27.4 percent year-to-date after being one of the world’s best stock markets with an 80 percent return last year when large volumes of money were printed.

Lanka IOC pushed the index up to close at 5.3 percent higher at 240.3 rupees.

DFCC gained 9.4 percent to close at 35 rupees and Hatton National Bank closed 1.9 percent higher at 81.5 rupees a share. (Colombo/Dec14/2022)

Read More: Sri Lanka shares close higher on Expolanka, Lanka IOC

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