Sri Lanka shares slip for second straight session on blue chips

Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:49am EST

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COLOMBO, Jan 28 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares slipped on
Tuesday for a second straight session, further retreating from a
seven-month high, led by blue chips like John Keells Holdings
 despite foreigners buying risky assets ahead of a U.S.
Fed meeting that is expected to reduce its monetary stimulus.
    The main stock index fell 0.43 percent, or 26.98
points, to 6,218.83, further moving away from its close on
Friday which was the highest since June 12.
    "There is a risk of foreign investors pulling out from the
shares," a stockbroker said on condition of anonymity. "We have
quite significant foreign investments in some blue chips and
large caps. So there is a worry of foreign outflow."
    Foreign investors, however, were net buyers of 267.56
million rupees ($2.05 million) worth of shares, extending the
year-to-date net foreign inflow to 1.06 billion rupees. They had
bought 22.88 billion rupees of stocks last year.
    Shares in conglomerate John Keells Holdings Plc slipped 2.37
percent to 235.90 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 5.2 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 1.46 billion rupees ($11.17 million),
more than last year's daily average of about 828.4 million
rupees.
($1 = 130.7250 Sri Lanka rupees)

 (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by
Anupama Dwivedi)
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