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Sri lanka News – Sri Lanka stocks closed weaker on Thursday for the second day to near their three month low in dull trade amid negative market sentiments as investors waited for directions from the a 2023 budget scheduled for Nov. 14, brokers said.

The market saw a turnover of 1.19 billion rupees, lower than this year’s average turnover of 3.1 billion rupees.

The main All Share Price Index (ASPI) closed weaker at 0.62 percent or 52.98 points to close at 8,508.98, its lowest close since August 09.

“Bourse dived further in red as negative sentiment continued to persist among investors while participation slid low ahead of the budget 2023,”First Capital Market Research said in its daily note.

“…It began to plunge steeply as SAMP (Sampath Bank) and EXPO (Expolanka) selling spree brought down the index…”

Analysts said investors are concerned over the impact of local debt restructuring on risky assets as the market awaited for debt restructuring decision between the government and its creditors ahead of an IMF loan approval.

The market is generally moving on a wait-and-see approach as it expects the interest rates to adjust downward, brokers said.

The market saw net foreign inflows of 105.5 million rupees. The total net foreign inflow so far for this year is 18.5 billion rupees.

The more liquid index S&P SL20 closed 0.69 percent or 17.98 points lower at 2,583.75.

The ASPI has fallen 1 percent in so far in November after losing 13.4 percent in October. It has lost 30.4 percent year-to-date after being one of the world’s best stock markets with an 80 percent return last year when large volumes of money were printed.

Even though the companies have shown reasonable profits in the second and third quarters of the year investors are concerned over December-quarter earnings.

Analysts said the disposable income of the general public and the investor’s reduction due to rapid inflation in the country and the proposed tax hikes is the main reason for the negative expectations over the December earnings.

Sampath Bank, leading the index fall, closed 2.9 percent lower at 33.4 rupees a share.

Expolanka fell 2.8 percent to 163 rupees a share while Ceylon Tobacco Company closed 2.3 percent weaker at 623.7 rupees a share. (Colombo/Nov03/2022)

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