Sri Lankan shares hit over 12-wk closing low led by telcos, beverages

Reuters – Sri Lankan shares fell on Monday to a more than 12-week closing low in thin trade as investors sold telecommunication and beverages stocks and as a right issue mopped up liquidity, but foreign investors were net buyers for a thirteenth straight session.

The Colombo stock index ended 0.43 percent weaker at 6,637.39, its lowest close since May 4. The bourse fell 1.63 percent during the month, but is up 6.57 percent so far this year.

Shares of large cap Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc fell 0.87 percent, while Dialog Axiata Plc lost 2.54 percent and Valibel One Plc ended 4.04 percent weaker.

Turnover stood at 508.2 million rupees ($3.31 million), well below this year’s daily average of around 893 million rupees.

Private lender Sampath Bank Plc announced a rights issuance of one new share for every six existing shares.

“The market dipped a bit on telecoms. The rights issue mopped up the liquidity, but market is looking positive,” said Hussain Ghani, associate director at Asia Securities.

Foreign investors net bought shares worth 121.8 million rupees on Monday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 25.8 billion rupees.

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