The stock market sustained its positive performance yesterday as the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index rose by 1.4 per cent to close at 36,112.37, while market capitalisation added N174.8 billion to close higher at N12.4 trillion.
After days of bearish run due to profit taking, the bulls returned on Wednesday. That bullish momentum was sustained helped by bellwether stocks. Guinness Nigeria Plc led the price gainers with 10.2 per cent, trailed by Dangote Cement Plc which rose by 4.7 per cent.
Investors have increased demand for shares of Guinness following its impressive results for the full year ended June 30, 2017.
Details of the audited showed a revenue of N125.919 billion in 2017, up from N101.973 billion in 2016. Net finance cost increased from N6.763 billion to N7.524 billion, making the brewing to end the year with an operating profit of N10.186 billion, up from N4.415 billion in 2016.
Profit after tax stood at N1.923 billion, hence the directors have recommended a dividend of N963.7 million. The company recommended a dividend of N963.7million for the year ended June 30, 2017, showing an increase of 28 per cent compared with N752.9 million in 2016.
The Managing Director/CEO, Guinness Nigeria, Mr. Peter Ndegwa, said that the results were driven by a relentless focus on executing our strategy and keeping costs down. "Despite the challenging economic conditions, we have remained focused on executing our company's total beverage strategy which gained further traction with strong growth in our international premium spirits portfolio following our first full year of distribution," he said.
Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, which also released an improved results for the half year to June 30, 2017, closed as the third highest price gainer. It chalked up 3.8 per cent. AIICO Insurance Plc, African Prudential Plc, and Dangote Sugar Refinery Plc garnered 3.6 per cent, 3.5 per cent and 3.4 per cent respectively.
Conversely, Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc led the price losers with 5.0 per cent, trailed by NCR Nigeria Plc with 4.9 per cent. May & Baker Nigeria Plc and Skye Bank Plc shed 4.7 per cent apiece.
Meanwhile, performance across sectors was mixed with the NSE Industrial Goods Index advancing the most by 2.9 per cent. The NSE Consumer Goods Index followed, rising by 1.0 per cent. On the flip side, the NSE Oil & Gas Index led the losers, shedding 2.9 per cent.
Similarly, the NSE Banking Index went down by 0.3 per cent and NSE Insurance Index closed 0.1 per cent lower.