COLOMBO, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares rose on Friday on bargain-hunting following five consecutive sessions of falls and after a top official said the government would address concerns about a possible tax on trading stocks.
The Colombo stock index rose 0.44 percent, or 28.16 points, to 6,436.28, but shed 0.8 percent for the week. On Thursday, it had closed at its lowest level since April 18.
“The market bounced back with bargain hunting,” said Hussain Gani, deputy CEO at Softlogic Stockbrokers.
“The government addressing tax concerns also helped to install investor confidence.”
The Colombo stock index had shed 3.9 percent through Thursday since July 27 and slid in 14 out of 15 sessions due to a string of disappointing June-quarter corporate results and speculation that the new tax reform bill will impose a tax on trading stocks.
Junior Finance Minister Eran Wickramaratne said on Thursday that these concerns would be addressed before the proposed bill is passed in the parliament.
Foreign investors bought shares worth a net 42.9 million rupees ($279,843.44) on Friday, extending the year-to-date net inflow to 27.7 billion rupees.
Turnover was 622.4 million rupees, less than this year’s daily average of around 870 million rupees.
Shares of Lanka ORIX Leasing Co Plc gained 4.5 percent, Sri Lanka Telecom Plc ended up 2.7 percent, Hatton National Bank Plc ended 1.2 percent firmer and conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc rose 0.3 percent. ($1 = 153.3000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)