Bourse Enjoys Largest NFI After More than Three Years

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The “strong” return of foreign investor confidence to Sri Lanka’s financial markets after a three year hiatus was reflected by the fact that the bourse enjoyed its highest ever net foreign inflow (NFI) after a lapse of more than three years and two months at yesterday’s (20) trading.

The bourse enjoyed an NFI of Rs 2.42 billion at yesterday’s trading, uplifting NFIs in the calendar year to date to Rs 8,922.8 million
(Rs 8.92 billion). Prior to yesterday, the last time that the bourse enjoyed a higher NFI than that of yesterday’s was on 15 July 2019 with a figure of Rs 8.72 billion. Yesterday was the seventh consecutive market day that the bourse has enjoyed NFIs.

The last time prior to yesterday the bourse enjoyed NFIs for at least seven consecutive market days was 15 calendar days ago, where for 15 consecutive market days, from 16 August 2022 to 5 September 2022, the bourse enjoyed consecutive NFIs.  

 Howbeit, the bourse fell for the third consecutive market day to yesterday led by profit taking, with the ASPI, yesterday over Monday declining by 1.24 per cent to 9,901.13 points and the S&P SL  Index by one per cent 3,185.59 points on a Rs 6.05 billion turnover.

The last time prior to yesterday the bourse fell for at least three consecutive market days was 22 days ago, when the bourse, for five consecutive market days, from 23 August to 29 August suffered continuous daily declines.

Consequently the ASPI fell to a seven calendar day low and the S&P SL 20 Index to a six calendar day low yesterday, with lower figures of 9,749.09 points recorded on 13 September for the ASPI and 3,179.79 points registered for the S&P SL 20 Index on 14 September, respectively.

 Howbeit, yesterday’s Rs 6.05 billion turnover figure was a 13 day high, with a higher figure than this last achieved on 7 September with a value of Rs 6.08 billion. Meanwhile, a total of 124.11 million shares changed hands at yesterday’s trading.

“Spot” Unchanged 56th Day

The “spot” closed unchanged for the fifty sixth consecutive market day at Rs 360/364 to the US dollar in two way quotes yesterday, market sources told “Ceylon Today.”

Consequently , yesterday, the administered market “spot” was down by between 80-79.31 per cent (Rs 160-161), year on year (YoY); thereby causing cost push inflationary pressure as Sri Lanka is an import dependent economy, they said.

 Meanwhile, yesterday, the value of this official administered “spot” was fixed at Rs 362.90 to the dollar, while a year ago it was fixed at Rs 200, down 81.45 per cent (Rs 162.90), YoY. In related developments,  the straitjacketed, inflexible administered market “spot” a year ago was fixed at Rs 200/203 to the dollar in two way quotes, unchanged for the  eighth consecutive market day to Friday  17 September 2021. Monday 20 September 2021 was a Poya holiday.

The band in which the “guided market ‘spot’” may currently operate is fixed at +/- three per cent of the officially administered “spot” value, where the latter is applicable for transactions involving the GoSL, CBSL and or between the GoSL and/or CBSL with the market, which was fixed at Rs 362.90 to the dollar  on Friday.

They further said that trades in the administered market “spot” (Rs 360/364) yesterday were mainly restricted to “bank-client” outright trades, while the interbank foreign exchange (FX) market was however dominated by swaps, which were outside the domain of the FX market for this purpose.

 “Spot” trades are settled after two market days from the date of transaction. CBSL, the steward of GoSL debt and of its foreign reserves also deals in “spot.”

By Paneetha Ameresekere