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Stock market buoyant

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The stock market was buoyant in the first quarter of 2018, registering a positive return on index of 17.08 percent and an increase in both total traded value and volume.

Turnover inched to K10.1 billion, compared to K727.6 million realised during the same period in 2017, representing 758.93 percent increase in share volume and 1294.67 percent in share value.

An update from the Malawi Stock Exchange (MSE) shows daily average share trades exhibited similar trends with the share market registering an average daily volume of 5,183,555 shares compared to 603,487 shares traded in the corresponding first quarter of 2017.

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The month of February registered the highest value traded of K7.7 billion and volume traded of 245,801,275.

Of the shares traded, 131.8 million NBS shares were traded as a Special Bargain.

The market registered a positive return on index as reflected in the upward movement of the Malawi All Share Index from 21598.07 points registered on January 1 2018 to 25286.79 points on March 31 2018, giving a return on index of 17.08 percent compared to 9.44 percent 2017.

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Price gains registered on FMB Capital Holdings, Mpico, National Bank of Malawi, NBS Bank, Nico, PCL, Sunbird, TNM and Old Mutual Limited were enough to offset a share price loss registered by Nitl.

Last year, the stock market registered an increase in turnover from K6.2 billion in 2016 to K13.5 billion.

The year was also historic, being the year when the market broke its nine-year listing drought.

Commentators said the positive outcomes show that investors are gaining confidence in the MSE and the economy, as a whole.

There have been running concerns on the effectiveness of the stock market as share price movements are seen to have little or no impact on the economy.

This, is largely attributed to liquidity challenges facing the market as only handful companies are listed.

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