Sri Lankan shares end higher as financials, consumer stocks gain

May 5 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed higher on Wednesday, helped by gains in financial and consumer staples.

* The CSE All-Share Index rose 0.49% to 7,145.97. On Tuesday the index fell 1.4%, its worst one-day fall since April 27.

* Sri Lanka reported 1,914 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, after seeing a record increase on Monday, while overall deaths have crossed 700 so far, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally.

* The island nation’s government had last month imposed fresh restrictions on public gatherings to help contain the surge in infections.

* Diversified holding company Expolanka Holdings Plc and cigarette maker Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc were the top boosts, gaining 1.6% and 2.9%, respectively.

* Trading volumes fell to 74.2 million from 195.5 million in the previous session.

* Foreign investors were net sellers in the equity market, offloading shares worth 127 million Sri Lankan rupees ($647,959.18) according to exchange data.

* Equity market turnover was 890.3 million rupees.

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* For a report on major currencies, click ($1 = 196.0000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)