(Greenwich Merchant Bank): The bears held sway in the local bourse, as stocks dropped for a seventh (7th) consecutive week. Thus, the All-Share Index and Market Capitalization edged lower by 69bps Week-on-Week (WoW) to 38,382.39 points and NGN20.1tn, respectively. Similarly, the Year-to-Date (YtD) return sunk to -4.7%.
Activity level was uneven given that the volume of units traded increased by 44.7% to average 468.4mn units, while the market turnover slipped 6.5% to NGN3.9bn on average. ETERNA rode to the top of the gainers’ chart as its share price gained 20.8% WoW to NGN5.58 per unit. In the week, the Company gave notice to the investing public of its Board of Directors meeting, holding on Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021 to consider the Company’s 2020 Audited Financial Statements. NEIMETH, on the other hand, declined by 14.8% to NGN1.78. Across sectors, the performance in the week varied; the Banking (2.1%) and Oil & Gas (1.6%) indexes closed positive, in contrast with the decline in the Industrial Goods (-2.6%) and Consumer Goods (-1.5%) sectors. The Insurance space, however, closed flat.
The bearish run in the equities market continued for the seventh (7th) week in a row, even as the positive performance of banking counters failed to lift the mood in the bourse. As a result, the year-to-date return dropped to its lowest in twenty-four (24) weeks at -4.7%. We maintain our view that, corporate earnings published for FY:2020 have so far not excited the market, amid an upward repricing of instruments in the fixed income space. Next week all eyes will be on the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) which, in our view, should keep the benchmark rate (MPR) unchanged. On the balance, we expect the equities market to trade range-bound next week.