Budget Blues Bring Bourse Down

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The bourse fell for the fifth consecutive market day to yesterday due to a mix of the impending interim budget where the second reading of its appropriation bill which will be taken today may have proposals to tax investors, margin calls, high inflation, Government’s latest import ban effective from last Tuesday and sustained uncertainty, market sources told Finance Today.

Howbeit, the bourse enjoyed net foreign inflows (NFIs), albeit nominal, for 10 consecutive market days to yesterday backed by a weak rupee. Prior to yesterday, the last time the bourse enjoyed NFIs for at least 10 consecutive market days was more than four-and-half years ago, where for at least 11 consecutive market days, from 2 January 2018 to 17 January 2018, the bourse enjoyed NFIs.

Yesterday’s NFIs amounted to Rs 59.2 million, though in the calendar year to date it has suffered net foreign outflows to the value of Rs 512.5 million.  Meanwhile, the ASPI, yesterday over Friday fell by 0.69 per cent to 8,732.47 points and the S&P SL 20 Index by 1.15 per cent to 2,830.67 points on a Rs 1.25 billion turnover. Prior to yesterday, the last time the bourse fell for five consecutive market days was over two months ago from 13 June to 20 June.

Further, yesterday’s turnover was the lowest in one calendar month, where a turnover lower than yesterday was last made on 28 July (Rs 1.05 billion). Meanwhile, yesterday’s market indices saw the ASPI falling to its lowest after 19 days and the S&P SL 20 Index its lowest in 21 days. The last time the ASPI made a value lower than yesterday was on 10 August (8,706.17 points) and the S&P, 8 August (8,422.97 points), respectively.

By Paneetha Ameresekere