4 January 2013

Nigeria: Julius Berger, Ashaka Cement Join Market-Making Stocks

Julius Berger Nigeria Plc and Ashaka Cement Plc Thursday joined the market-making stocks on the Nigerian bourse in line with the phased introduction of additional stocks by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).

The market-making programme, which assisted in creating liquidity in the market, was introduced last September with 16 stocks with a promise by the NSE of a phased introduction of additional stocks over six months.

In line with that promise, the NSE yesterday added Julius Berger and Ashaka Cement to the list to bring the number to 33 market making stocks.

With this development, the prices of Julius Berger and Ashaka Cement could record the daily 10 per cent price movement either upward or downward.

The first stocks that made the market making list were: PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc; Nigerian Bag Manufacturing Company Plc; Presco Plc; International Breweries; Lafarge Wapco; Fidson Healthcare Plc; Redstar Express Plc; Zenith Bank Plc; Sterling Bank Plc; D.N.Meyer; Diamond Bank; FCMB; Fidelity Bank Plc; Nigerian Breweries Plc; Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and UAC Nigeria Plc.

The following later joined: Access Bank; Academy Press; Custodian & Allied Insurance; First Bank Plc; Dangote Sugar Plc; Union Bank Plc, NASCON and Nestle Nigeria Plc as well as AIICO Insurance Plc; United Bank Plc; Ecobank Transnational Plc and Skye Bank Plc; Dangote Flour Mills Plc, Unity Bank Plc and Prestige Assurance Plc.

Meanwhile, the NSE All-Share Index depreciated by 0.21 per cent after opening the year with a growth of 1.5 per cent the previous day. The ASI closed lower at 28,441.38, while market capitalisation stood at N9.091 trillion.

However, the decline recorded was influenced by a loss of N3.10 by Dangote Cement Plc. Lafarge Cement WAPCO Nigeria Plc trailed with a decline of N2.50, while FBN Holding Plc went down by N0.72 to close at N16.38 per share.

Despite the decline, analysts at Meristem Securities Limited said, "remain bullish on our expectation for the Nigerian equities market in 2013 as we see listed companies churning out attractive results."

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