Sri Lanka stocks rise, but SEC chief’s resignation hits volume
Aug 17 (Reuters) – Sri Lankan stocks edge up on Friday led by the island nation’s top lender, Commercial Bank of Ceylon, but concerns over the resignation of the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission trimmed trading volume.
The Colombo Stock Exchange’s main index rose 0.38 percent, or 18.41 points, to 4,927.13.
Commercial Bank of Ceylon rose 1.49 percent to 102.10 rupees. Foreign investors bought a net 39.9 million rupees worth of shares, extending the net foreign inflow this year to 26.98 billion rupees.
Friday’s turnover was 216.7 million rupees ($1.64 million), less than a quarter of this year’s daily average of 860.3 million rupees.
SEC chief Tilak Karunaratne resigned after telling Reuters in an interview earlier in the week that he was under pressure to step down from investors under investigation for market manipulation.
Stockbrokers and dealers said Karunaratne’s resignation would further dampen an underperforming bourse which has fallen 18.89 percent so far this year.
The rupee ended weaker at 132.35/40 against the dollar from Thursday’s close of 131.95/132.00 on importer dollar demand, dealers said.
The Sri Lanka Forex Association said the highest deal was done at 132.75.