Following renewed profit taking activity, the equities market halted five days gaining streak to close on a downturn yesterday, causing market capitalisation to plunge by N20 billion.

Specifically, at the close of trading yesterday, the NGX All-Share Index depreciated by 37.83 basis points to 43859.30 points from 43897.13 points reported the previous day.

Similarly, market capitalisation of listed equities also declined by N20 billion or 0.08 per cent to N23.630 trillion from N23.650 trillion reported the previous day.

Investors exchanged 294.539 million shares valued at N6.768 billion in 4501 deals as against 311.255 million shares worth N8.642 billion that exchanged hands the previous day in 5159 deals.

The market negative performance was driven by price depreciation in large and medium capitalised stocks including, Nestle Nigeria, Nigerian Breweries (NB), Dangote Cement, Nigerian Exchange Group (NGXGroup) and Berger Paints Nigeria.

As measured by market breadth, market sentiment was negative as 26 stocks lost value while 17 constituted the gainers’ chart.

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On the price movement chart, Mutual Benefits topped losers’ chart, declining by 10 per cent to close at 27 kobo while Berger Paint trailed with a loss of 9.94 per cent to close at N7.70 kobo. UPDC Reits depreciated by 8.14 per cent to close at 95 kobo. Nestle Nigeria Plc fell by 7.81 per cent to close at N1435.00. Unity Bank dipped by 6.12 per cent to close at 46 kobo.

On the other hand, BUA Foods led the gainers’ chart, increasing by 10.00 per cent to close at N64.35 kobo. Eterna Plc followed with a gain of 5.09 per cent to close at N5.57 kobo.

Union Bank of Nigeria appreciated by 4.63 per cent to close at N5.65 kobo. Wema Bank gained 3.57 per cent to close at 87 kobo, while Oando Plc added 2.83 per cent to close at N4.73.

Total volume of trades decreased by 5.4 per cent to 294.539 million units, valued at N6.768 billion, and exchanged in 4,501 deals. Transactions in the shares of Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) topped the activity chart with 58.357 million shares valued at N57.360 million. BUA Foods followed with 51.526 million shares worth N3.316 billion, while FBN Holdings (FBNH) traded 16.507 million shares valued at N197.304 million.

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Guaranty Trust Holding Company (GTCO) traded 14.050 million shares valued at N358.213 million, while Access Bank transacted 13.337 million shares worth N126.749 million.