By Dipo Olowookere

The bulls cemented their dominance on the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited on Wednesday amid sustained buying interests in local equities.

Impressive corporate earnings bolstered the bourse further by 0.49 per cent at the close of transactions yesterday, with investors mopping up shares in the energy and banking sectors, especially Geregu Power and MTN Nigeria, which declared dividends.

An analysis of the market data showed that the energy index rose by 3.61 per cent, as the banking counter appreciated by 1.22 per cent, offsetting the 1.34 per cent loss, the 0.11 per cent decline and the 0.02 per cent fall printed by the insurance, the consumer goods and the industrial goods, respectively.

As a result, the All-Share Index (ASI) gained 261.01 points to close at 53,499.68 points compared with the previous day’s 53,238.67 points, and the market capitalisation grew by N142 billion to N29.140 trillion from N28.998 trillion.

This was influenced by the 10.00 per cent rise in the prices of Seplat and Industrial and Medical Gases, closing at N1210.00 and N7.70, respectively. Northern Nigerian Flour Mills rose by 9.46 per cent to N8.10, International Energy Insurance appreciated by 9.33 per cent to 82 Kobo, and NAHCO jumped by 9.26 per cent to N8.85.

On the flip side, Guinness Nigeria dropped 10.00 per cent to trade at N63.00, Ardova lost 9.95 per cent to settle at N17.20, Academy Press fell by 9.85 per cent to N1.19, RT Briscoe shed 9.68 per cent to 28 Kobo, and Cornerstone Insurance declined 8.33 per cent to finish at 55 Kobo.

Business Post reports that the market breadth was flat yesterday because the price gainers and losers’ charts recorded 20 members each.

However, the level of activity dropped in the midweek session as the trading volume, value, and the number of deals decreased by 19.90 per cent, 6.78 per cent, and 14.14 per cent apiece.

A total of 200.4 million equities worth N5.5 billion exchanged hands in 3,716 deals during the session as against the 250.2 million equities worth N5.9 billion transacted in 4,328 deals on Tuesday.

For the second straight day, Universal Insurance topped the activity chart after it traded 57.8 million shares and was trailed by GTCO, which transacted 16.6 million stocks. UBA sold 11.2 million shares, Transcorp traded 8.8 million equities, and Geregu Power transacted 8.5 million stocks.