Dhaka stocks plunged for the second day on Sunday, as investors continued selling shares amid anxieties over a ‘complete lockdown’ the government has planned to enforce from April 14 across the country to check the COVID-19 outbreak.
DSEX, the key index of the Dhaka Stock Exchange, declined by 1.71 per cent, or 90.07 points, to close at 5,164.69 points on Sunday after losing 82.55 points in the previous trading day.
Trading hours on the country’s two stock exchanges — the DSE and the Chittagong Stock Exchange, have been shortened to two hours (from 10:00am to 12:00pm) amid restrictions the government has been enforcing since April 5 to check the pandemic.
The key index started falling sharply from the very beginning of Sunday’s session and continued the vibe till the end of the session as investors went on panic sales amid fears over the complete lockdown, market operators said.
The government on April 9 decided to enforce a seven-day complete lockdown from April 14 as the cases of COVID-19 infection keep surging.
Market operators said that investors were uncertain whether the stock market would remain open or not from April 14 as there was no clear information about the matter.
The country on Sunday reported 5,819 new cases and 78 more deaths from the coronavirus, the highest ever COVID-19 deaths.
Investors were also confused about repeated changes in rules by the regulator, market operators said.
The Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission on April 7 withdrew the floor prices of shares of 66 companies that caused a significant fall in the companies’ share prices on the following day.
On April 10, the BSEC set the price-fall circuit breaker for the 66 companies at 2 per cent, lowering it from 10 per cent.
Earlier on March 19, 2020, the BSEC introduced the floor price system to bar share prices of listed companies from falling below a certain level to check free fall in share prices amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
EBL Securities in its daily market commentary said, ‘Investors were engaged in panic sales as they feared the lockdown restrictions are expected to continue for an uncertain period of time due to rising number of deaths from COVID-19.’
‘Regulator’s decision to put a 2 per cent circuit breaker floor limit on the 66 companies without floor price restriction has failed to rescue the index in today’s [Sunday] session,’ it said.
Of the 346 scrips traded on the DSE on Sunday, 24 advanced, 264 declined and 52 remained unchanged. The turnover on the DSE dropped to Tk 456.55 crore on Sunday from Tk 475.87 crore in the previous session.
Share prices of all sectors declined on the day.
Average share prices of miscellaneous sector dropped by 3.8 per cent, engineering 3 per cent, non-bank financial institution 2.7 per cent and bank 1 per cent.
DS30, a composition of 30 large capitalised companies, also decreased by 1.88 per cent, or 37.47 points, to close at 1,952.91 points on Sunday.
Shariah index DSES shed 1.67 per cent, or 20.04 points, to settle at 1,177.61 points.
BEXIMCO led the turnover chart with its shares worth Tk 45.4 crore changing hands on the day.
Robi, BD Finance, Purabi General Insurance, Asia Pacific Insurance, Sonar Bangla Insurance, LankaBangla Finance, Agrani Insurance and Beximco Pharmaceuticals were the other turnover leaders on the day.
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