Stock markets defy COVID-19, as Nigerian equities rise 0.22%

Equities

INVESTORS have been advised to tread cautiously in making any investment decision this week despite the positive sentiment that saw a reversal of the bearish trend in the market last week. The Nigerian equities market had defied the impact of the COVID-19 and expectations that the market may take further hit following the fears arising from the disease.

At close of trading last weekend, activities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) took a positive turn, rising by 0.24 percent on the back of bargain hunting on banking stocks, mirroring the mixed performance across other major markets.

At the end of the week, performances across global stocks were largely mixed as stocks in the US Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and S&P 500 Index closed higher at 0.6 percent and 0.2 percent respectively; European Euro Stoxx and FTSE were down 3.4 percent and 1.8 per cent respectively, while Japanese Nikkei 225 also recorded weekly loss, falling by 1.9 percent. Conversely, Chinese stocks, Shanghai SE, rose by five percent; emerging markets (MSCI EM: +0.8%) boosted by a positive showing in China (+5.0%) while frontier markets – MSCI FM – were down 2.6 percent. Specifically, the NSE All Share Index (ASI) rose to  26,279.61 points from 26,216.46 points the previous week, indicating 0.24 percent increase. Similarly, the equities market capitalisation by 0.27 percent to N13.695 trillion from N13.658 trillion the previous week, resulting in N37 billion gains to investors. However, analysts at Cordros Capital, a Lagos-based investment banking firm, said that sentiment in Nigerian Bourse is still weak despite the positive close and advised investors to take position in fundamentally sound stocks. “Despite the market closing positive this week, sentiments remain weak. Hence, we advise investors to trade cautiously, taking positions in fundamentally justified stocks,” they said. Meanwhile, sectoral performance was mixed as only two of the five sectors recorded gains, while the other three recorded price depreciation. The banking and insurance sectors rose 4.7 percent and 0.9 percent respectively, while the consumer goods (-5.9%), industrial goods (-4.0%) and oil & gas (-0.7%) sectors closed in the red.

SOURCE:VANGUARD

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