By G9ija

Equities investors staked N10.842 billion on 1.226 billion shares in 19,529 deals amidst profit taking last week. After a rally, propelled by reactions to corporate earnings and dividend declarations the previous week, profit taking in banking stocks such as Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc and Zenith Bank Plc led to a moderation of the growth last week. Consequently, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) went down by 0.05 per cent to close at 25,591.95, while market capitalisation ended the week at N13.351 trillion.

However, analysts at Cordros Research urged investors to remain cautious given the prevailing economic situation.

“Our view continues to favour cautious trading as risks remain on the horizon due to a combination of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in Nigeria and weak economic conditions. Thus, we continue to advise investors to seek trading opportunities in only fundamentally justified stocks,” they said.

The Financial Services industry regained the number spot on the activity chat with 980.482 million shares valued at N6.987 billion traded in 11,634 deals. As a result, it contributed 79.9 per cent and 64.4 per cent to the total equity turnover volume and value respectively. The Conglomerates industry followed with 59.758 million shares worth N72.458 million in 550deals.

The third place was the Consumer Goods industry, with a turnover of 58.869 million shares worth N1.349 billion in 2,862 deals. Trading in the top three equities namely Custodian Investment Plc, Zenith Bank Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc accounted for 404.171 million shares worth N3.847 billion in 3,910 deals.

Meanwhile, only 23 equities appreciated in price last week lower than 41 equities in the previous week, while 38 equities depreciated in price, higher than 19 equities in the previous week.

Eterna Plc led the price gainers with 28.8 per cent, trailed by C & I Leasing Plc with 11.1 per cent. NEM Insurance Plc appreciated by 8.7 per cent. NPF Microfinance Bank Plc chalked up 8.6 per cent, just as Academy Press Plc and Lafarge Africa Plc garnered 7.4 per cent and 6.6 per cent in that order.

Others among the top 10 gainers included: Oando Plc (6.6 per cent); Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc (6.5 per cent); Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc (5.2 per cent) and Access Bank Plc (4.6 per cent).

Conversely, Royal Exchange Plc led the price losers with 15.1 per cent, trailed by Consolidated Hallmark Insurance Plc with 14.7 per cent.

Livestock Feeds Plc shed 10.6 per cent, while Ardova Plc and Arbico Plc lost 9.9 per cent and 9.6 per cent respectively. Julius Berger Nigeria Plc went down by 8.2 per cent, just as Associated Bus Company Plc and Unity Bank Plc depreciated by 7.6 per cent and 7.1 per cent in that order. CAP Plc and Guinness Nigeria Plc shed 6.8 per cent and 6.5 per cent respectively.