KATHMANDU: Stocks opened Tuesday's trading on a strong note as the Nepal Stock Exchange (Nepse) index rallied more than 11 points in early trading. Nonetheless, the benchmark index pared most of its gains in the afternoon and traded flat for most of the remaining trading hours. Nepse closed the day with a modest gain of 1.87 points at 1,301.28 points.
After a 22-point surge on Monday, buying pressure eased slightly in the session. The market also lacked significant conviction during the day's trading as both buyers and sellers remained active. More than Rs 729 million worth of shares changed hands on the day.
On sectoral front, all the traded sectors, except Finance and Banking, closed the day in green. Hotels sector witnessed significant strength as the group's sub-index shot up by more than 5.2 percent. Next, 'Others' sub-index posted gains of 1.32 percent. All other sub-indices ended the day higher.
Shares of Nepal Credit and Commercial Bank Ltd were actively traded on the day. Over Rs 59 million worth of the commercial bank's shares changed hands. Shivam Cements Ltd and Nepal Bank Ltd followed suit with turnovers of over Rs 49 million and Rs 35 million, respectively. Similarly, Citizen Investment Trust and NMB Bank Ltd logged turnovers of Rs 26 million, each.
Among gaining shides, shares of Himalayan Distillery Ltd turned in the best performance of the day with posting a gain of 10 percent. Next, Oriental Hotels Ltd logged gains of 6.75 percent. Similarly, share prices of Radhi Bidyut Company Ltd and Soaltee Hotel Ltd also climbed up by over 5 percent each. Sindhu Bikash Bank Ltd, Citizen Investment Trust and Global IME Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha Ltd were among other top advances of the day.
In contrast, Panchthar Power Company Ltd continued its slump posting a decline of more than 9 percent in the session. Subsequently, share prices of Summit Micro Finance Development Bank Ltd, National Hydropower Company Ltd and Support Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Ltd were also down by 5.63 percent, 4.17 percent and 3.4 percent, respectively. Other top declining stocks include Progressive Finance Ltd, Kalika Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha and Asian Life Insurance Company Ltd.
On earnings front, Standard Chartered Bank Ltd and Nabil Bank Ltd published their financials for the third quarter of FY2018/19. While the former reported an 11 percent year-on-year growth in its net profit, earnings of the latter grew by 3 percent. Similarly, earnings of Bank of Kathmandu Ltd and Laxmi Bank Ltd increased by 29 percent and 19 percent, respectively.
ARKS technical analysis indicates the market forming a small bullish candlestick on the daily timeframe. The index tested the resistance of 1,300-point mark, but failed to make a substantial breakout in the day. Nonetheless, if the benchmark index holds its ground above 1,300 points, further upward movement can be expected in the coming sessions.