Indices at the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) gained yesterday amid investors expecting further relaxing of the monetary policy by the Central Bank.
The benchmark All Share Price Index (ASPI) rose 0.55 percent of 33.5 points to 6, 089.69 and more liquid S&P SL20 index rose 0.57 percent or 16.89 points to 2, 965.34.
The first monetary policy review of the new Central Bank Governor Prof. W.D Lakshman and this year’s final monetary policy review will be announced this morning.
During the meeting with foreign correspondents in Colombo this week, Senior Economic Advisor to Prime Minister Ajith Nivard Cabraal had said that the Central Bank should consider further the easing of policy rates.
He had said such a move would augur well with the already announced stimulus package by the government by way of sweeping tax cuts to revitalize the sluggish economy.
The government has also announced a 12-month moratorium on SME loans, which will come into effect from January next year.
First Capital Research said there was a 50 percent probability for a rate cut, lowering its previous 100 percent probability announced earlier amid the tax cuts, SME loan moratorium and relaxation of capital adequacy requirements declared by the government and the Central Bank.
Meanwhile, yesterday’s market turnover was Rs.422 million and foreigners were net sellers.
Foreign sales for the day topped Rs.49 million and purchases were Rs.7 million, resulting in a net foreign outflow of Rs.42 million.
Foreigners showed interest on John Keells Holdings PLC, Tokyo Cement PLC (X), Renuka Holdings PLC, Kelani Cables PLC and Tokyo Cement PLC (N).
Foreign sales were recorded in Chevron Lubricants Lanka PLC, Royal Ceramic Lanka PLC, Access Engineering PLC, Commercial Leasing & Finance PLC and Dialog Axiata PLC.
Crossings accounted for 57.2 percent of the turnover with one crossing recorded in Hatton Plantation Limited PLC (HPL) amounting to Rs.241.3 million.
According to Asia Securities, plantation sector was the highest contributor towards the turnover with Rs.242.4 million followed by manufacturing sector and banks, finance & insurance sector generating Rs.81.1 million and Rs.34. 1 million respectively.
Retail activity was witnessed in counters such as in Chevron Lubricants Lanka PLC, Tokyo Cement PLC (X) and Seylan Bank PLC (X).