Nigerian stocks extend losses as emerging markets tumble

Nigerian stocks extended losses for the ninth session on Wednesday as investors sold off shares from the relatively liquid local banking and consumer goods sectors. Stocks, which reached an almost one-year low at the previous session, remained depressed, traders said, with more companies closing with a sell offer.

The All Share Index .NGSEINDEX dropped to 35,074 points, down 0.6 percent, tracking a 2.1 percent fall on the MSCI emerging market index, which also entered a technical bear market. “Market sentiment shows little signs of improvement as major indicators remain negative,” one trader said.

Nigeria’s stock market, once seen as a darling of frontier investors has slipped to become one of the worst performers in Africa but its decline should open up buying opportunities for long-term investors, analysts say. Equities have fallen more than 20 percent so far after peaking in January. They rose 42 percent last year.

Stocks started to ease in late January after the market was hit by a global risk-averse sentiment, amidst rate rises in the United States which reversed capital flows to frontier markets. Mounting concerns over political risk in the run-up to next year’s presidential election where incumbent Muhammadu Buhari will seek re-election have accelerated losses for the stock market.

The index of Nigeria’s top 10 lenders shed 1.03 percent while consumer goods stocks drop 1.47 percent to drag the main index down.

A total of 28 firms declined led by UAC properties, which fell the maximum 10 percent. Berger Paint shed 9.72 percent, Oando was down 9 percent and Diamond Bank lost 4.35 percent. Reuters

Pix: Nigeria stock market