The Financial Express

Bangladesh stocks tumble amid panic-driven sell-offs

| Updated: March 23, 2021 10:47:54

Bangladesh stocks tumble amid panic-driven sell-offs

Stocks dipped in the outgoing week as panic-driven investors dumped their holdings amid fears of fresh wave of the virus due to the rising trend of Covid-19 infected patients in recent days.

Week-on-week, the DSEX, the benchmark index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE), eroded by 134.16 points or 2.41 per cent to settle at 5,434, after gaining 152 points in the past two consecutive weeks.

Market analysts said investors dumped their holdings particularly in the last session of the week riding on the news that DGHS proposed for full lockdown as daily Covid-19 infections are rising alarmingly in recent days.

In the last 11 days, the transmission of novel coronavirus had been gradually rising every day around the globe with experts fearing the spread of new strains of the pathogen, including those first detected in the United Kingdom and South Africa.

Owing to a rising number of infections, investors apprehend that the country could be in for a second round of lockdown, which means the stock market would also be kept shut again, said a top broker preferring anonymity.

Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) has also proposed for full lockdown in the wake of the rising number of Covid-19 patients to curb the spread.

The spread of such news created a rumour that the stock market may be kept shut again, leaving a negative impact on the market, said the broker.

However, Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC) assured that there is no such possibility. If the banks were kept open, so would the market, they said.

Two other indices also ended lower with the DS30 index, comprising blue chips, plunged 80.78 points to finish at 2,073 and the DSE Shariah Index dropped 18.10 points to close at Tk 1,247.

The week's total turnover on the prime bourse also dropped to Tk 26.27 billion which was Tk 43.30 billion in the week before as last week saw four trading days.

The daily turnover averaged out at Tk 6.56 billion, which was more than 24 per cent lower than the previous week's average of Tk 8.66 billion.

Block trade contributed 5.40 per cent to the total weekly turnover, where stocks like British American Tobacco, Unilever Consumer Care, Al-Arafah Islami Bank, United Power, and BRAC Bank dominated the block trade board.

The port city's bourse, Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE), also plunged with its CSE All Share Price Index - CASPI -losing 414 points to settle at 15,750 and the Selective Categories Index - CSCX -losing 249 points to finish the week at 9,500.

Of the issues traded, 161 declined, 57 advanced and 77 remained unchanged on the CSE.

The port city's bourse traded 32.51 million shares and mutual fund units with a turnover value of Tk 1.16 billion during the week.

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