KATHMANDU: Nepal Stock Exchange (Nepse) index, which maintained negative bias for most of the trading hours, witnessed a sharp decline in the closing minutes on Monday. As a result, the benchmark index shed 8.36 points to close at 1,181.84 points.
Overall skepticism prevailed in the market as the Nepse index hit its lowest closing mark since early September. Market participation remained fairly bland, with the market recording a subpar turnover of Rs 175 million.
All sectoral indices, Manufacturing & Processing sub-index, followed the broader market and closed the day in red. Majority of the losses came from life insurance scrips as the group's sub-index dropped by 1.14 percent. 'Others' sub-index also went down by 0.85 percent. Heavyweight banking segment also came under pressure with the respective sub-index shedding 0.83 percent. Sub-indices of Microfinance, Life Insurance and Finance groups also edged lower.
In terms of stock-wise turnover, Nepal Bank Ltd logged the highest turnover of Rs 23 million. The Class 'A' bank has seen significant rise in turnover amount since the listing of its Further Public Offering (FPO) shares. Shares of other commercial banks stocks followed suit, with NIC Asia Bank Ltd and Bank of Kathmandu Ltd registering total turnover of Rs 8 million each. Likewise, NMB Bank Ltd and Prabhu Bank Ltd logged turnover of Rs 6 million and Rs 5 million, respectively.
Kisan Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Ltd led the list of gaining stocks, as its share price surged by 5.80 percent. Similarly, unit price of Sanima Equity Fund rose 5 percent. Grameen Bikas Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha Ltd also saw its share price go up by 4.17 percent. Share prices of Bottlers Nepal (Tarai) Ltd and Rairang Hydropower Development Company Ltd also gained over 3 percent each.
On the contrary, shares of Everest Insurance Company Ltd hit the negative circuit for the second straight day on Tuesday. Its share price fell by almost 10 percent to Rs 851 per unit on Tuesday. Shares of Shree Investment Finance Company Ltd also tumbled by 4 percent. Among other top losing scrips, Arun Valley Hydropower Development Company Ltd, IME General Insurance Ltd and Samata Microfinance Bittiya Sanstha Ltd posted loss of over 3 percent each.
On the corporate space, Gandaki Development Bank Ltd declared 14.20 percent cash dividend to its shareholders as per its notice to Nepse. In the meantime, Green Development Bank Ltd published its earnings report for the first quarter of Fiscal Year 2018/19, reporting a net profit of Rs 2.21 million against a net loss of Rs 2.13 million in the corresponding period a year ago. Finance companies, including Gurkhas Finance Ltd and Reliance Finance Ltd, also published their earnings reports on the day. While the former reported a net profit of more than Rs 12 million, the latter posted a net loss of over Rs 14 million.
As per the ARKS technical analysis, the index has now closed slightly above its support of 1,180 points following four straight days of losses. Technical indicators like Relative Strength Index (RSI) and Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) also suggest absence of notable momentum in the bourse.
Nonetheless, a slight bounce back can be expected from the immediate support zone of around 1,180 points.
This column is produced by ARKS Capital Advisors Ltd
(Views expressed are those of the producer and do not necessarily reflect those of this publication)