October 17, 2017 / 11:38 AM / 8 months ago

Sri Lankan shares hit near one-week closing low on profit-taking

COLOMBO, Oct 17 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares ended down for a second straight session on Tuesday, slipping further from their highest close in more than 10 weeks hit last week, with investors booking profits in telecom stocks while block deals boosted the turnover, brokers said.

The Colombo stock index ended 0.36 percent weaker at 6,572.05, its lowest close since Oct. 11. Last week, the bourse rose 1.6 percent, posting its fifth straight weekly gain.

“Today, we observed that profit-taking was still on,” said Atchuthan Srirangan, senior research analyst, First Capital Holdings PLC.

“The turnover is boosted by some big deals. We saw a foreign selling of over 1 billion rupees in East West Properties which might trigger more foreign selling in future.”

Shares of Dialog Axiata Plc ended 3.1 percent weaker, Sri Lanka Telecom Plc finished 5.4 percent down, while Lion Brewery Plc closed down 4.7 percent.

Shares of East West Properties Plc, which accounted for 58 percent of Tuesday’s turnover and saw 88 million shares of foreign selling, ended 4 percent up.

Turnover was 1.9 billion rupees ($12.38 million), more than double of this year’s daily average of 939 million rupees.

Foreign investors were net sellers of shares worth 1.1 billion rupees on Tuesday. They have, however, net bought 19.1 billion rupees worth of shares so far this year.

$1 = 153.5000 Sri Lankan rupees Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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