Benchmark index sheds 1.07 per cent


The Nepal Stock Exchange (Nepse) resumed trading today, but plunged four per cent or 48.16 points in the first 40 minutes. At one point of time it had declined by 52 points, but soon after that buyers started dominating the market which gradually led to the stock market recovering 50 points to hover around 1,200 points at 2:35pm.

By the end of the trading day, the benchmark index had lost 1.07 per cent or 12.87 points to settle at 1,188.70 points. The turnover today stood at Rs 347.80 million which was achieved through the trade of 970,171 units of shares of 130 listed companies changing hands through 4,863 transactions.

Radha Pokharel, chairperson of Nepal Pujibazar Laganikarta Sangh, mentioned that since the market had reopened after a long time most investors were in a ‘wait and see’ mode due to which the market was southbound on the opening day.

“The coronavirus pandemic has largely affected the economy, which was reflected in Nepse today,” she said, adding, however, that she expected the market to rise in the coming days.

In line with the Nepse index, the sensitive index also fell by 1.55 per cent or 4.03 points to 256.29 points, while the float index dropped by 1.73 per cent or 1.47 points to 83.53 points.

Meanwhile, the trading, manufacturing, life insurance and others subgroups were in the green zone today, while the remaining subgroups dropped significantly. Shareholders of Citizen Investment Trust saw their share value gain 9.99 per cent today.

Similarly, Himalayan Distillery, Nepal Investment Bank and Nepal Investment Bank (Promoter Share) gained more than nine per cent.

However, Swabalamban Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha, Nepal Reinsurance Company, Asha Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha and Infinity Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha saw a steep dive of over nine per cent today.

The secondary market reopened today after the Securities Board of Nepal (SEBON) directed the management of Nepse to do so after receiving heavy criticism for keeping the market shut even as banks and financial institutions, insurance firms and other companies had been allowed to reopen by the government.

The country’s sole secondary market had been shut since more than three months due to the unfavourable circumstances caused by the COVID-19 spread in the country.

In between this period, Nepse was able to open for only two days due to rising COVID-19 cases and the continuous lockdown.

Nepse had resumed trading on May 12 after a 50-day break, as per the direction of SEBON. However, it remained open for only two days after the benchmark index tumbled noticeably.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on June 30, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.