Sri Lankan index slips from over 7-month high on profit-taking, outflows

Mon Jan 27, 2014 6:28am EST

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COLOMBO, Jan 27 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares slipped on
Monday, retreating from seven-month highs hit in the pervious
session on foreign outflows and profit-taking after gaining for
three straight sessions on low interest rates and expected
foreign inflow.
    The fall, however, was much less than its Asian peers, which
plunged on concerns over U.S. Federal Reserve further tapering
its stimulus this week and fears of a slowdown in China.
 
    The main stock index fell 0.16 percent, or 9.82
points, to 6,245.81, from its highest close since June 12 hit on
Friday.
    Foreign investors were net sellers of 33 million rupees
worth of shares. But they have been net buyers of 793.5 million
rupees so far this year. They had bought 22.88 billion rupees of
stocks last year.
    Conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc slipped 3.16
percent to 239.20 rupees.
    The index has gained 5.2 percent in the last 12 sessions
through Friday including last week's 2 percent gain, which
analysts attributed to the central bank's rate cut on Jan. 2 and
the recent fall in t-bill yields. 
 
    The index has been in an overbought region since Jan. 7,
Thomson Reuters data showed. It has risen 5.6 percent so far
this year following a 4.8 percent gain in 2013, after having
fallen in the previous two years.
    The day's turnover was 872.6 million Sri Lanka rupees ($6.68
million), inline with last year's daily average of about 828.4
million rupees.
 
($1 = 130.6500 Sri Lanka rupees)

 (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Anand
Basu)
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