By Niyi Jacobs, Editor
Positive reactions returned to the local equities market on Wednesday despite the sustained weakness of investor sentiment as the market all share index advanced 0.09 per cent to give investors profit of N18 billion due to the buying interest which was seen in MTN Nigeria (+0.6%), First Bank Holding (+2.0%) and Guinness Nigeria Plc (+10.0%) to buoy gains in equities midweek as the benchmark index rose to 38,636.15 points.
Consequently, the market year to date loss improved to -4.1 per cent and market capitalisation increased by N18 billion to settle at N20.22 trillion from N20.20 trillion.
Also, the level of trading activity varied as the traded volume of exchange rose 33.2 per cent to 278 million units and the value of traded deals declined 21.9 per cent to N2.3 billion. The most traded stocks by volume were Japaul Oil and maritime services (46.2m units), UAC Nigeria (32.6m units), and Fidelity Bank (28.5m units) while Zenith Bank (N431.4m), UAC Nigeria (N311.5m), and GTBank (N250.9m) led by value.
Across sectors of the market midweek, the performance was bearish as 4 indices closed lower. The ICT and consumer goods indices gained 0.3 per cent and 0.2 per cent respectively due to price appreciation in MTN Nigeria (+0.6%), Guinness Nigeria Plc (+10.0%) and International Breweries (+0.9%).
Conversely, the Insurance index led losers’ chart with a 2.2 per cent decline on the back of profit-taking in NEM Insurance (-6.5%) and AXA Mansard Insurance (-2.1%). The Banking, Oil & Gas indices also declined by 20 basis points and 5 basis points respectively due to price declines in GTBank (-0.5%), Sterling Bank (-8.3%) and Oando Plc (-0.7%). Price weakness in CUTIX Plc (-9.8%) dragged the Industrial goods index lower by 1 basis point.
Furthermore, investor sentiment which is measured by market breadth declined to 0.6x from 0.8x recorded in the previous session as 14 stocks advanced against 22 decliners. Guinness Nigeria Plc (+10.0%), Meyer Pharmaceuticals (+8.2%) and Wema Bank (+5.3%) were the top gainers while Northern Nigerian Flour Mills Plc (-10.0%), Fidson Health and Pharmaceuticals (-9.9%), and CUTIX Plc (-9.8%) were the top decliners.
Also, the NSE 30 Index increased by 0.15 per cent to close at 1,534.86 points as against 1,532.60 points as on the previous day. Market turnover closed with a traded volume of 122.74 million units. Guinness Nigeria Plc and First Bank Holding were the key gainers, while Sterling Bank and FCMB were the key losers.
Elsewhere, at the investors’ and exporters’ FX market, the Naira appreciated by 0.12 per cent as the dollar was quoted at N410.50 to the dollar as against the last close of N411 per dollar as most participants were seen maintaining bids between N400 and N436.81 per dollar.
Similarly, the NT-Bills secondary market closed on a mildly positive note with the average yield across the curve decreasing by 1 basis point to close at 4.44 per cent from 4.45 per cent on the previous day. Average yields across medium-term maturities declined by 6 basis points.
However, the average yields across short-term and long-term maturities closed flat at 2.41 per cent and 5.93 per cent, respectively. Meanwhile, the yield on the NTB 9-Sep-21 maturity bill compressed by 28 basis points, while yields on 20 bills remained unchanged.
At the Primary Market Auction held midweek, the apex bank offered NT-Bills worth N69.56 billion across 91-day (N15.92 billion), 182-day (N4.50 billion), and 364-day (N49.14 billion) tenors.
Further afield, the average yield across the curve in the OMO bills market increased by 12 basis points to close at 6.91 per cent as against the last close of 6.79 per cent. Selling pressure was seen across medium-term and long-term maturities with average yields expanding by 13 basis points and 15 basis points, respectively.
However, the average yield on short-term maturities closed flat at 3.77 per cent. The yields on 11 bills advanced with the 28-Sep-21 maturity bill recording the highest yield increase of 64 basis points, while yields on 14 bills remained unchanged.
Meanwhile, the FGN bonds secondary market closed on a mildly negative note on Wednesday, as the average bond yield across the curve cleared higher by 7 basis points to close at 8.11 per cent from 8.04 per cent on the previous day. Average yields across medium tenor and long tenor of the curve widened by 34 basis points and 26 basis points, respectively. However, the average yields across the short tenor of the curve declined by 1 basis point. The 22-JAN-2026 maturity bond was the worst performer, with an increase in yield of 145 basis points.