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Equities Market Declines 0.9% as Q2 Begins

The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE)  All-Share Index (ASI) fell by 0.9 per cent to close at 38,383.05 yesterday, causing the Nigerian equities market to begin the second quarter on a negative note.

The negative performance followed profit-taking by investors after the market had a five-day bull run on the back of impressive  2013 financial corporate results.

Impressed by the impressive results and dividends declaration for the 2013 financial year, investors increased the demand for equities, which led to five-day rally.

However, the bullish trend ended yesterday as profit-taking hit major stocks.

Consequently, the ASI shed 0.9 per cent, while market capitalisation shed N117.2 billion to close at N12.329 trillion. A total of 37 stocks depreciated compared o 0nly 18 that appreciated.

Leading cement firm, Dangote Cement Plc led the price losers with a decline of N6.93 to close at N235.00 per share. The stock had last week hit a new high when the market reacted positively to its 2013 results.

The company reported a revenue of N386.2 billion. Profit before tax stood at N191 billion compared with 135 billion, while profit after tax rose to N201 billion. As a result,  the company recommended a dividend a N119 billion (N7.0 per ordinary share), showing an increase of 133 per cent as against N3 paid  in 2012.

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