The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) appreciated by 0.3 per cent to close at 24,097.48 yesterday, following the return of the bulls to the stock market.
After depreciating by 1.99 per cent last week, the market remained bearish on Monday when trading resumed this week. However, bargain hunting by some investors led to a rebound in the market to close in the positive territory.
Although a total of 17 stocks appreciated as against 18 that depreciated, gains recorded by Airtel Africa Plc, BUA Cement Plc and Zenith Bank Plc propelled the growth.
Market operators said the news of plan by BUA Cement to establish three million metric tonnes cement plant and 50 megawatts power plant in Guyuk and Lamurde local governments of Adamawa State in the North-eastern region of Nigeria.
The Chairman of BUA, Abdul Samad Rabiu, had recently disclosed preliminary findings show that the two local governments are reputed to have good quality of limestone deposits, stating that BUA Cement was ready to begin the investment in the state. He added that the BUA will use new technologies to supply power to the proposed cement plant and communities of Guyuk and Lamurde in addition to providing three thousand direct and five thousand indirect jobs. The chairman stressed that the Guyuk Cement Plant will be the major investment in the North East by BUA.
The shares of the cement firm went up by 2.5 per cent, while Airtel Africa Plc Zenith Bank Plc appreciated by 3.7 per cent and 1.9 per cent respectively. But the overall price gainers’ chart was led by Redstar Express Plc with 9.7 per cent. WAPIC Insurance Plc trailed with 6.0 per cent, while C & I Leasing Plc appreciated by 5.2 per cent. PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc gained 5.0 per cent.
Mutual Benefits Assurance Plc garnered 4.7 per cent, just as Sterling Bank Plc and FCMB Group Plc chalked up 4.2 per cent and 4.0 per cent respectively.
Conversely, Okomu Oil Palm Plc led the price losers with 9.9 per cent, trailed by Unilever Nigeria Plc and MRS Oil Nigeria Plc with 9.7 per cent apiece.
AXA Mansard Insurance Plc and Custodian Investment Plc dipped by 9.6 per cent and 9.0 per cent respectively. However, activity level fell as volume and value traded decreased by 18.0 per cent and 7.1 per cent to 155.5 million shares and N2.6 billion respectively.