Stocks finished slightly higher Monday with key index of the premier bourse hitting nearly eight months high as some enthusiastic investors remained active on sector specific stocks.
Analysts said the investors were active both sides of trading fence as risk-averse investors booked quick-profit, while some optimistic investors were active on sector specific stocks, taking the benchmark index to eighth months high level.
The market started with an upward note and the key index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) rose almost 19 points within first hour of trading, but last three hours lost most of the early gains, ultimately finished only 2.20 points higher.
"The investors were mostly active both sides of trading fence, while profit booking on telecommunication, power and engineering stocks dominated the later half of the trading session," said an analyst at a leading brokerage firm.
DSEX, the prime index of the DSE, went up by 2.20 points or 0.05 per cent to settle at 4,626.18, which is nearly eight months high level of DSEX since January 24. DSEX added around 103 points or 2.27 per cent in the past nine consecutive sessions.
"The market maintained its positive trend generating huge volume," said LankaBangla Securities, a stockbroker, in its regular market analysis.
The stockbroker noted that the day's huge participation indicates growing enthusiasm among the investors.
However, the two other indices closed in the red zone. The DS30 comprising blue chips fell 2.06 points or 0.12 per cent to finish at 1,763.68. The DSE Shariah Index (DSES) shed 1.31 points or 0.12 per cent to close at 1,109.80.
Turnover, the important indicator of the market, saw significant rise and the total turnover amounted to Tk 5.40 billion, which was 71 per cent higher than the previous day's Tk 3.15 billion. It was the one month highest turnover since August 23.
Pharmaceuticals sector emerged as turnover leader, grabbing 18 per cent of the day's total turnover value, followed by engineering and fuel and power, capturing 14 per cent and 13 per cent respectively.
IDLC Investments, a merchant bank, said, "Investors seem to have returned to the market causing surge in activities".
However, sellers prevailed in the market, halting the recent gaining momentum in the market, said the merchant bank.
Asian Tiger Capital Partners, an asset management company, said, "The market ended meagerly positive as index hit eight months high amid buoyant participation from the investors".
The asset management company noted that the market began with an uptrend in the morning which fades away over the course of the session as sell pressure emerged at the latter half and ended slightly higher.
NBFI sector performed relatively well. Among the other prominent sectors pharma, insurance, food and allied, bank, ceramic and textile outperformed the market while the rest underperformed.
The large-cap sectors showed mixed performances. NBFIs posted the highest gain of 1.45 per cent followed by food and allied 0.49 per cent, pharmaceuticals 0.48 per cent and banks 0.08 per cent.
Telecommunication posted the highest loss of 0.84 per cent followed by fuel and power 0.41 per cent and engineering 0.08 per cent.
The losers took a modest lead over the gainers as out of 323 issues traded, 138 closed lower, 121 closed higher and 64 remained unchanged on the DSE trading floor.
ACME Laboratories dominated the DSE turnover chart with over 3.0 million shares worth nearly Tk 327 million changing hands, followed by Lafarge Surma Cement, Square Pharmaceuticals, Shahjibazar Power Company and MJL Bangladesh.
National Housing Finance and Investment was the day's best performer, posting a rise of 9.76 per cent, while Stylecraft was the worst loser, slumping by 6.18 per cent.
The port city bourse, the Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE) also finished slightly higher with its Selective Categories Index- CSCX - advancing 4.67 points to settle at 8,657.09 points.
Losers beat gainers as 110 issues closed lower, 98 closed higher and 29 remained unchanged on the CSE.
The port city bourse traded 9.30 million shares and mutual fund units worth over Tk 303 million in turnover.