UPDATE 1-Nigerian stocks rise as local funds snap up banking shares

Published 14/11/2019, 17:28
© Reuters.  UPDATE 1-Nigerian stocks rise as local funds snap up banking shares

(Adds details, analyst comment)

By Chijioke Ohuocha

ABUJA, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Nigerian stocks rose 1.84% to a

five-week high on Thursday, powered by banking shares, as local

investors shut out of a treasury auction poured money into

shares instead.

The index, which is down 16% so far this year, rose to a

level last seen in October, as Nigeria's top 10 banking shares

.NGSEBNK10 jumped 7.04%.

The central bank last month barred local investors from

participating in its Treasury bill auctions, in a bid to draw

more foreign interest to boost dollar liquidity and prop up the


On Thursday, the central bank auctioned 300 billion naira

worth of open market securities, traders said. But with local

investors shut out of the sale - the second since the ban was

introduced - they had to seek alternative places to park their


One fund manager, who said he had been investing in cash and

bank deposits since the central bank announcement, said he

thought the treasury auction ban could be relaxed soon as excess

liquidity affects the markets.

Shares in 31 companies rose on Thursday on the bourse, which

has had a mixed performance this year, while just three


Access Bank ACCESS.LG , which completed a takeover of local

rival Diamond Bank in April, gained 9.6%. Access is up 43% year

to date. FBN Holding FBNH.LG , FCMB FCMB.LG , Wema Bank

WEMABAN.LG , each rose more than 9%.

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