stock market sri lanka

Sri Lankan stocks fall to 1-1/2-month closing low on foreign selling

ATCHUTHAN SRIRANGAN, SENIOR RESEARCH ANALYST AT FIRST CAPITAL HOLDINGS PLC, SPEAKS TO REUTERS

FEBRUARY 16, 2018

COLOMBO, March 15 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan shares extended falls on Thursday to a one-and-a-half-month closing low as foreign investors continued to reduce their holdings on expectation of an interest rate hike by the U.S. Federal Reserve at its next meeting.

Foreign investors sold a net 56.7 million rupees ($363,578.07) worth of shares, but they have been net buyers of 7.02 billion rupees worth of equities so far this year.

The Colombo stock index fell for a second straight session and ended 0.28 percent weaker at 6,500.99, its lowest close since Feb.1.

“Some foreigners are exiting because of the fear of Fed rate hike pencilled in March meeting. Till that, we will see some foreign selling,” said Atchuthan Srirangan, a senior research analyst with First Capital Holdings PLC, adding that Sri Lanka saw some outflows before the last two Fed meetings.

Turnover was 806.2 million rupees, lower than this year’s daily average of around 973.3 million rupees.

Shares in Dialog Axiata Plc fell 2.9 percent, while Melstacorp Plc ended 3.7 percent weaker and Ceylon Beverage Holdings Plc dropped 8.9 percent.

Analysts said a communal violence in the central district of Kandy also weighed on sentiment.