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Stock market bounces back

BY: Enoch Darfah Frimpong

The stock market bounced back from last week’s slide with gains in eleven equities propelling the market indices.

The benchmark Composite Index as a result gained 20.21 points to close the week at 1,753.67. This gain in the benchmark index takes the year-to-date return on the bourse to 46.17 per cent.

The Financial Index (FI) also added 24.77 points to close the week at 1,576.57. The return on the financial index stands at 51.61 per cent.

On price movements, Ghana Commercial Bank led gainers leaping by 79GHp to close at GH¢4.01. Total Petroleum was also in demand jumping 40GHp to GH¢29 while Ecobank Ghana gained 15GHp to GH¢4.92. Fan Milk extended its rally edging up by 6GHp to GH¢5.51 while Enterprise Group and Ghana Oil bagged 4GHp and 3GHp to 74GHp and GH¢1.07 respectively.

Five other equities gained a pesewa each. SG-SSB rose to 83GHp; BOPP was up to GH¢3.27; Guinness edged up to GH¢3.56 while Unilever and Tullow closed the week at GH¢12.23 and GH¢34.01 respectively.

On the other hand, TBL and ETI were under selling pressure shedding 5GHp and 4GHp to 35GHp and 18GHp while SIC and PBC eased to 29GHp and 20GHp respectively.
Volume and value of shares traded were impressive but failed to match that of the previous week. A total of 2.02 million shares valued at GH¢7.15 million were recorded.

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GCB is likely to extend its run in the week ahead as investors take positions for dividends. Fan Milk, SG-SSB and GOIL are the other equities expected to be in demand. ETI and SIC may lose grounds on profit taking and selling pressure.

On the back of the foregoing, we look forward to advancers keeping the indices steady.

MONEY MARKET

Short dated securities edged higher at the auction held last Thursday March 28, 2013. The 91-day bill was up to 22.93 per cent from 22.91 per cent. The 182-day bill also rose to 23.23 per cent from the previous week’s 23.02 per cent.

The 1-Year Note was unchanged at 22.50 per cent  but the 2-Year Note dropped from 22.70 per cent to 22.50 per cent.

A total of GH¢340.17m was raised by the Central Bank from bills and notes. A target of GH¢265m has been pencilled for the auction to be held on Friday April 5, 2013.

On the currency market, the Cedi failed to hold on to gains registered against the Euro, Pound, Swiss Franc and the Rand. The local currency, however, climbed against the Dollar.

Unimpressive data on the US economy for March including lower hiring rate gave the local currency a boost against the Dollar this week. The Cedi gained 0.18 per cent against the greenback to close the week at GH¢1.94.

The Cedi was down against the Euro as the deal on the bailout for Cyprus strengthened the 17-nation currency. The Cedi was down 0.34 per cent against the Euro to close the week at GH¢2.49.

The local currency also trimmed 0.29 per cent and 0.57 per cent against the Pound and the Swiss Franc with rates on the interbank board reading GH¢2.94 and GH¢2.05 respectively.

The Cedi also lost grounds to the Rand sliding by 0.92 per cent to close the week at GH¢0.21 against the South African Rand.

Merban Stockbrokers Ltd/GB