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Sri Lanka stocks at more than 7-week high on hope for politics, earnings

Sri Lanka stocks at more than 7-week high on hope for politics, earningsCOLOMBO: Sri Lankan stocks hit a more than seven week high on Wednesday in high turnover led by blue chips as expectations of political stability after Aug. 17 parliamentary polls lifted sentiment, brokers said.

Brokers said investors were also awaiting cues from June-quarter corporate earnings.

The main stock index ended 0.76 percent, or 54.04 points up at 7,199.63, its highest since June 1.

Turnover was worth 1.62 billion rupees ($ 2.50 million), the highest since July 17 and well over this year’s daily average of 1.05 billion rupees.

Foreign investors were net sellers of 442.3 million rupees on Wednesday extending year-to-date net foreign selling to 1.41 billion rupees worth of shares.

“There was huge buying interest today specially the stocks we’re looking at for strong earnings,” said Dimantha Mathew, a research manager at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd. “Buying interest emerged predominantly on earning expectations.” Conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc rose 2.05 percent while Distillers Sri Lanka Plc rose 3.51 percent.

Analysts expect next month’s election can help strengthen President Maithripala Sirisena’s political position.

Copyright Reuters, 2015

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