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Market News

Profit-taking takes toll on the bourse

Nairobi Securities Exchange
Nairobi Securities Exchange staff on the trading floor. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Profit-taking by investors in the past week has slowed down the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) #ticker:NSE 2019 resurgence as punters look to lock in some of the gains enjoyed from blue chip stocks.

All three indices ceded ground last week, led by the NSE All Share Index that was down two per cent, while the NSE 20 and NSE 25 indices were 0.5 and 1.6 per cent lower respectively.

Market capitalisation retreated by Sh47 billion during the week, closing Friday at Sh2.335 trillion.

“The indices ended the week lower, in one of the worst weekly declines since the year started, reversing a four-week upward trend … it gives an impression that investors may have started to cash in on the strength of the market, which is up 12 per cent year-to-date,” said Standard Investment Bank (SIB) in its latest weekly market report.

Market data showed there was heightened local investor activity last week, indicating that some of the big buyers in recent weeks were looking to book profit.

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Investor participation

Local investor participation as a percentage of total turnover stood at 34.7 per cent last week, up from 20.9 per cent the previous week.

Interestingly, SIB said, foreign investors were net buyers on a weekly basis for the first time this year, with net inflows of Sh110 million, having held a net selling position of Sh360 million the previous week.

The investors were mainly taking up EABL shares, ahead of the company’s shareholder register closure on Friday for a Sh2.50 interim dividend.

The market has this year been providing good returns to investors, reversing some of the paper losses they made in 2018.

Large bank stocks, EABL #ticker:EABL and Safaricom, #ticker:SCOM have keyed the revival recording double digit share price gains.

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