KATHMANDU, April 1: Nepal Stock Exchange (Nepse) benchmark index recovered 51.74 points last week to close at 1,220.29 points on Thursday, the last trading day of the week. The stock market, after falling rapidly in the previous week, observed a recovery last week on the account of news reports about the government's preparation to issue a white paper on Nepal's financial situation.
While the benchmark index plunged 51.89 points, or 4.25 percent, on Monday, the market observed recovery in the remaining trading days. Due to the rapid fall of the benchmark index on Monday, Nepse imposed a circuit breaker in the market and suspended trading for 15 minutes.
The circuit breaker is applied as a measure to give investors a chance to pause and make trading decision when there is extreme volatility in the market.
A statement by Minister for Finance, Yubaraj Khatiwada, who reportedly said on Sunday that there is no reason why stock market should not fall, was cited as the immediate factor behind the panic sell-off among investors. However, the news reports that the white paper was on the process of being unveiled elated investors, helping the stock market to recover in the remaining trading days.
Finance Minister Khatiwada released the white paper which has stated that Nepse benchmark index is volatile. The white paper states that the lack of adequate institutional investor, rising interest rates, and rise in the share issuance and supply of shares have influenced the share price.
The stock market remained open for trading only for four days. It was closed on Sunday to mark the Ram Nawami festival.
Most of the trading groups ended in the green zone. Insurance group was the biggest gainer of the week as its sub-index jumped highest by 268.8 points to close at 5,569.35 points. Hotels group followed the suit as its sub-index rose 115.37 points and closed at 1,786.27 points.
Hydropower group also went up 82.22 points to end at 1,455.72 points. Sub-indices of Development Bank and Microfinance groups also climbed up 63.31 points and 56.4 points, respectively, settling at 1,458.5 points and 1,340.23 points.
Banking, the heavyweight group, ended 51.92 points higher at 1,101.83 points. Manufacturing and processing group also logged the gain of 39.71 points to close at 2,162.99 points. 'Others' and Finance groups went up 6.72 points and 2.228 points to close at 677.54 points and 644.03 points respectively. 'Trading' group, however, lost 10.73 points to close at 199.06 points.
A total of 5.89 million units of shares of 180 companies worth Rs 1.89 billion were traded in the market last week through 27,522 transactions. The turnover was 9.85 percent higher than the previous week.
Nepal Life Insurance Company Ltd topped the list of companies in terms of turnover (Rs 194.4 million) while Nepal Bank Ltd remained at the top in terms of number of traded shares (256,000 units). Nepal Life Insurance Company Ltd became the top company in terms on highest number of transactions (2,170).
Bonus shares of NMB Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Ltd, Everest Insurance Company Ltd, Machapuchchhre Bank Ltd and Standard Chartered Bank Nepal Ltd were listed in the market for trading.