Sri Lankan stocks slip from 1-wk high; turnover at 2-mth low

COLOMBO, March 3 Mon Mar 3, 2014 6:59am EST

COLOMBO, March 3 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares edged down on Monday from a one-week high with turnover slumping to a two-month low despite foreign investors being net buyers of the island nation's risky assets.

The main stock index fell 0.44 percent, or 26.30 points, to close at 5,914.01, slipping from a one-week high hit on Friday.

Top conglomerate John Keells Holdings fell 1 percent to 218.50 rupees.

The day's turnover was 259.6 million rupees ($2 million), the lowest since Dec. 26 and less than a quarter of this year's daily average of about 1.06 billion rupees.

Foreign investors bought a net 6.35 million rupees worth of shares on Monday, but they have been net sellers of 5.42 billion rupees worth of shares for the past 16 sessions as some offshore funds exited the market.

The index has seen a net 4.03 billion rupees of foreign outflows so far in 2014, after enjoying net inflows of 22.88 billion rupees last year.

Analysts said investors were concerned about further outflows, though local investors are still optimistic about risky assets due to falling interest rates. ($1 = 130.7250 Sri Lanka rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Prateek Chatterjee)

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