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Monetary Policy Review – Monthly Economic Watch – May 2017

Policy rates unchanged
Private sector credit growth decelerated gradually to 21.0% in February 2017 and 20.4% in March 2017. The Earlier tightening of monetary policy by central bank and resultant increase in interest rates impacted the credit growth.
Combined impact of the decline in export earning and increased expenditure on imports as a result of the drought conditions expanded Trade deficit to USD 1.7Bn till February 2017.
Gross official reserves dipped to USD 5.1Bn by end April 2017 from USD 6.0Bn by end 2016. Both the government securities market and the Colombo Stock Exchange experienced foreign inflows in recent months.

Accordingly policy rates were increased,

  • Standing Deposit Facility Rate – 7.25%
  • Standing Lending Facility Rate – 8.75%
  • Statutory Reserve Ratio (SRR) – 7.50%
Read the full report –

https://www.firstcapital.lk/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Monthly-Economic-Watch-May-2017.pdf

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka proving services to invest in Sri Lanka through fixed income securities such as investments in government securities– treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares close at one-month low; telcoms lead

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares on Friday hit their lowest close in more than a month, dragged down by telecom stocks, while investor sentiment continued to remain low on concerns about rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index ended down 0.06 percent at 6,084.99, its lowest since Feb. 6. It shed 0.27 percent during the week, posting its third straight weekly decline.

Foreign investors were net buyers for the eighth straight session on Friday, purchasing shares worth 174.96 million rupees ($1.16 million), and extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 2.12 billion rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 711 million rupees, more than this year’s daily average turnover of 690.1 million rupees.

“Foreigners are the only people active in the market these days as not a lot of activities are taking place,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“The market is slowly coming down with rising rates and economic uncertainty.”

Traders said there were concerns after the International Monetary Fund urged Sri Lanka’s central bank to be ready to tighten monetary policy if credit growth or inflation does not abate.

Shares of Dialog Axiata Plc dropped 0.89 percent, while Commercial Leasing and Fiance Plc plunged 10.71 percent and conglomerate John Keells Holdings dropped 0.14 percent.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more-than-four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept the key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.2500 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares fall for third straight session; John Keells down

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares fell for a third straight session on Thursday, posting their lowest close in a month, dragged down by diversified stocks such as John Keells Holdings Plc as investor sentiment continued to remain low on concerns about rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index ended down 0.1 percent at 6,088.80, its lowest since Feb. 6. It shed 0.6 percent last week in its second straight weekly decline.

Foreign investors were net buyers for the seventh straight session on Thursday, purchasing shares worth 63.6 million rupees ($420,495.87), and extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 1.95 billion rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 875.6 million rupees, more than this year’s daily average turnover of 689.7 million rupees.

“The market is mainly down because of John Keells. It is slowly coming down with rising rates and economic uncertainty,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“Foreigners seem to be the only buyers at the moment.”

Traders said there were concerns after the International Monetary Fund urged Sri Lanka’s central bank to be ready to tighten monetary policy if credit growth or inflation does not abate.

Shares of John Keells Holdings fell 1.06 percent while Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc, the country’s biggest listed lender, declined 1.29 percent and Carson Cumberbatch Plc dropped 2.91 percent.

Sri Lanka Telecom Plc dropped 1.41 percent and Hatton National Bank Plc ended 1.16 percent weaker.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more than four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.2500 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

Sri Lankan shares ease; interest rate concerns weigh

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares ended slightly weaker on Tuesday, with financial and manufacturing stocks dragging down the index as investor sentiment continued to remain low on concerns about rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index ended down 0.15 percent at 6,108.11, On Friday the bourse hit its lowest close since Feb. 9. It shed 0.6 percent last week in its second straight weekly decline.

Foreign investors were net buyers of shares worth 379.6 million rupees ($2.51 million) on Tuesday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 1.73 billion rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 539 million rupees, less than this year’s daily average of 676.9 million rupees.

“Retail and institutional segment is on silent (mode) with the high interest rates and economic uncertainty,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday urged Sri Lanka’s central bank to rebuild international reserves, while maintaining exchange rate flexibility, and to be ready to tighten monetary policy if credit growth or inflation do not abate.

Shares in Ceylon Cold Stores Plc fell 2.51 percent while Commercial Leasing & Finance Plc lost 6.67 percent.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more-than-four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

 

($1 = 151.1500 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sunil Nair)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares edge up; beverage, telecoms lead

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares closed slightly firmer on Monday, after posting a more than three-week closing low in the previous session, with beverage and telecom stocks driving the gains.

However, investor sentiment continued to remain low amid concerns about rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index ended up 0.26 percent at 6,117.19, after posting its lowest close since Feb. 9 on Friday. It shed 0.6 percent last week in its second straight weekly decline.

Foreign investors were net buyers of shares worth 384.7 million rupees ($2.55 million) on Monday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 1.35 billion rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 711.9 million rupees, more than this year’s daily average of 680.1 million rupees.

“Some crossings boosted the turnover. The good sign is we are seeing continued foreign buying these days,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“Local investors are on the sidelines, mainly because of the high interest rates and economic uncertainty.”

Shares in Ceylon Cold Stores Plc jumped 6.12 percent, Lion brewery (Ceylon) Plc rose 6.27 percent, Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc gained 0.71 percent, and Sri Lanka Telecom Plc climbed 2.41 percent.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more than four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.0000 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares close at over 3-week low; turnover up on block deals

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares on Friday hit their lowest close in more than three weeks, as investors sold telecom shares and on concerns over rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index ended down 0.42 percent at 6,101.51, its lowest close since Feb. 9. The bourse dropped 0.6 percent on the week, in its second straight weekly decline.

Foreign investors were net buyers of 70.8 million Sri Lankan rupees ($468,563.86) worth of shares, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 963.03 million rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 1.21 billion rupees, the highest since Feb. 28 and nearly double this year’s daily average of 679.4 million rupees.

“Even today the crossings pushed the turnover. The foreign inflow is continuing, which is a good thing,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“Foreign participation is high and local investors are completely staying out of the market.”

Conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc, which accounted for 72.5 percent of the day’s turnover on block trade, ended steady.

Sri Lanka Telecom Plc slid 5.44 percent, while Dialog Axiata Plc declined 3.48 percent.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more-than-four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.1000 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares edge up on foreign investor buying

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares closed marginally higher on Thursday after posting a near three-week closing low in the previous session, as foreign investors bought recently battered stocks while concerns about rising interest rates continued to hurt investor sentiment.

The Colombo stock index ended up 0.09 percent at 6,127.11, after closing at its lowest since Feb. 9 on Wednesday.

Foreign investors were net buyers of 292.6 million rupees ($1.94 million) worth of shares, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 892.2 million rupees worth of equities.

Turnover was 783.9 million rupees, more than this year’s daily average of 666.6 million rupees.

“Market continues to move sideways but today we have seen some institutional and foreign buying,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

Sri Lanka Telecom Plc ended 3.87 percent higher after reporting a group net profit of 289 million rupees for the December quarter, compared with a net loss of 157 million rupees a year earlier.

Trans Asia Hotels Plc jumped 8.12 percent, while Commercial Leasing & Finance Plc rose 3.45 percent.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more than four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.1000 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

Sri Lankan shares hit 2-1/2-week closing low; block deals boost turnover

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares fell on Monday to hit their lowest close in more than two weeks as investors were worried over rising interest rates, but foreign buying and block deals in Expolanka Holdings boosted the turnover.

Foreign investors net bought 716.2 million rupees worth of equities on Monday, reversing the year-to-date net foreign outflow to an inflow of 580.7 million rupees worth of equities so far this year.

The Colombo stock index ended down 0.24 percent at 6,122.04, its lowest close since Feb. 9.

“Selling pressure on John Keells brought the market down,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“Investor sentiment is negative due to the rising interest rates and most of the investors are on a wait-and-see approach,” he added.

Shares in conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc slid 1.20 percent, while Hatton National Bank Plc slipped 2.04 percent.

Expolanka Holdings Plc, which accounted almost half the day’s turnover, climbed 1.72 percent on foreign buying.

Turnover stood at 1.35 billion rupees ($8.90 million), well more than this year’s daily average of 625.2 million rupees.

Yields on treasury bills have risen to a more-than-four-year high since October, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

($1 = 151.7500 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares edge up as investors pick up bank stocks

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares rose slightly on Wednesday from a more than one-week closing low hit in the previous session as investors bought banking shares, but concerns over rising interest rates weighed on sentiment.

Yields on treasury bills rose 3-10 basis points at a weekly auction on Tuesday. They have risen 44-73 basis points since Oct. 7 to more than four-year highs, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

The Colombo stock index ended 0.04 percent firmer at 6,129.69, snapping a four-session losing streak and edging up from its lowest close since Feb. 9 hit on Tuesday.

“Some crossings in blue chips boosted the turnover. Other than that, there was nothing and the market was very dull as investors are still on the sidelines,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

“Selling pressure is there, but there are no buyers.”

Shares in Lanka ORIX Leasing Company Plc rose 4.18 percent, while Nestle Lanka Plc, which posted a 42 percent rise in profit for the quarter ended Dec. 31, climbed 2.02 percent.

Turnover stood at 482.7 million rupees ($3.19 million), well below this year’s daily average of 612.5 million rupees.

Foreign investors net bought 37.8 million rupees worth of equities on Wednesday, but they have net sold 215 million rupees worth shares so far this year.

 

($1 = 151.1000 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lankan shares hit more than 1-wk closing low as rising rates weigh

FIRST CAPITAL’S HEAD OF RESEARCH, DIMANTHA MATHEW, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

Sri Lankan shares hit a more than one-week closing low on Tuesday, their fourth straight session of losses, as investors sold shares of blue chip companies such as John Keells Holdings Plc amid concerns over rising interest rates.

The Colombo stock index fell 0.2 percent to 6,127.49, slipping to its lowest close since Feb. 9.

“We have seen some interest on retail sector counters,” said Dimantha Mathew, head of research at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd. “Investors are mainly waiting for some positive news and now watching the direction of the fixed-income segment.”

Yields on treasury bills rose 3 to 10 basis points at a weekly auction on Tuesday. They have risen 44 to 73 basis points since Oct. 7 to more than four-year highs, while the central bank has kept key policy rates on hold.

Conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc dropped 0.6 percent, while Ceylon Tea Services Plc fell 11.1 percent.

Turnover stood at 300.4 million rupees ($1.99 million), less than half this year’s daily average of 616.2 million rupees.

Foreign investors net bought 19.9 million rupees worth of equities on Tuesday, but have net sold 252.8 million rupees worth shares so far this year.

Investors are expected to wait for direction from the outcome of a sovereign bond issue, analysts said.

The Sri Lankan cabinet last week approved a $1.5 billion sovereign bond issue to repay loans and manage interest payments.

($1 = 151.1500 Sri Lankan rupees)

(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)

 

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory.

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.