COLOMBO, June 27 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed slightly lower on Tuesday as banking shares fell, but foreign buying capped losses while local investors waited for more clarity on a new tax bill.
The Colombo stock index ended 0.18 percent weaker at 6,703.18, its lowest close since June 19. The bourse fell 0.05 percent last week.
Foreign investors net bought 395.4 million rupees worth of shares, extending their year-to-date net inflow to 21.5 billion rupees worth of equities.
“Foreign investors are buying select shares. But local investors are still waiting for some direction, especially on new inland revenue act,” said Jaliya Wijeratne, CEO, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.
In a disclosure to the bourse, Lanka Securities (Pvt) Limited said its client Ube Singapore Holdings Pte. Ltd bought 10.69 million shares in Tokyo Cement Company (Lanka) at 72 rupees each.
Subsequent to this transaction, the client has acquired 10 percent of the Tokyo Cement, it added. Shares in Tokyo Cement rose 5.7 percent.
The IMF, which has long urged Sri Lanka to boost tax revenue through modernisation and simplification of its fiscal system, has urged the government to submit to parliament a new Inland Revenue Act.
Turnover was 1.7 billion rupees ($11.10 million), nearly two times this year’s daily average.
Shares of Hatton National Bank Plc fell 1.92 percent while Ceylon Theatres Plc lost 5.63 percent and Nestle Lanka Plc closed 1.18 percent lower.
The markets were closed on Monday for Id-Ul-Fitr or the Ramzan Festival Day. ($1 = 153.2000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Vyas Mohan)