The value of the Nigerian equities market rose N117 billion to close at N14.2 trillion on continuing bullish trend.
The bargain hunting in heavy weight counters also led to a growth of 0.84 per cent in the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) All-Share Index (ASI) to close at 39,167.39. As a result, the year-to-date (YTD) growth has improved to 2.4 per cent.
Yesterday's performance was influenced by gains in Dangote Cement Plc, Nestle Nigeria Plc and Seplat Petroleum Company Development Plc. In all, 27 stocks appreciated while 21 depreciated.
Seplat led the price gainers with 8.1 per cent on as investors increased their stake ahead of improved returns. The company hd last year returned to profitability last year and consolidated on the performance in the first quarter ended March 31, 2018.
The Managing Director of Seplat, Mr. Austin Avuru last week told investors at the company's annual general meeting that the company ws well equipped to deliver long-term value for shareholders.
"I am pleased to report that Seplat made a return to full-year profitability in 2017, registered strong cash flow performance and significantly strengthened the balance sheet. In a year of contrast, we were plagued throughout most of the first half by force majeure at the Forcados terminal... Our proactive and decisive management coupled with the strong underlying fundamentals of the business have seen us emerge from an exceptionally challenging period a much fitter and stronger business that is well equipped to deliver long-term value for our shareholders," he said.
Double 11 Plc closed as the second highest price gainer with 4.9 per cent, NEM Insurance Plc and Equity Assurance Plc garnered 4.8 per cent and 4.7 per cent in that order.
Conversely, Prestige Assurance Plc led the price losers with 4.6 per cent, followed by Eterna Plc with 4.4 per cent. FCMB Group Plc shed 4.1 per cent, just as Niger Insurance Plc and A.G Leventis Plc went down 3.7 per cent.
In terms of sectors, four of them appreciated while only one declined. The loser was the NSE Banking Index that shed 0.04 per cent. The NSE Oil & Gas Index led with 4.9 per cent on the back of gains by Seplat and Double 11.
The NSE Insurance Index rose 0.9 per cent, while the NSE Industrial Goods Index and NSE Consumer Goods Index depreciated by 0.5 per cent and 0.4 per cent.