(Colombo) REUTERS: Sri Lankan shares snapped their five-session gaining streak yesterday as investors booked profits, while the rupee ended weaker due to importer dollar demand.
The country’s benchmark stock index ended 0.72 percent weaker at 5,951.75, slipping from the highest close since Jan. 29 it hit on Monday.
The bourse is down about 1.66 percent so far this year.
The country’s stock market had a turnover of Rs.2.2 billion (US$12.49 million), nearly four times of this year’s daily average of about Rs.635.7 million so far. Last year’s daily average came in at Rs.834 million.
Foreign investors bought a net Rs.274 million worth of shares, extending the year-to-date net foreign buying to Rs.1.16 billion, according to index data.
Shares of Lion Brewery Plc fell 8.3 percent, Sri Lanka Telecom Plc declined 5.4 percent, the biggest listed lender Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc ended 1.9 percent weaker and Sampath Bank Plc closed 2.3 percent down.
Meanwhile, the currency ended a tad weaker at 176.25/30 per dollar compared to Monday’s close of 176.20/25. However, the rupee is up 3.6 percent so far this year. The Central Bank left key interest rates unchanged on July 11 as expected, after cutting them in May to support the economy as tourism and investment plummeted in the wake of deadly suicide bombings
in April. Foreign investors sold a net Rs.3.74 billion worth of government securities in the week ended July 24, extending the year-to-date net foreign outflow to Rs.22.19 billion, the Central Bank data showed.