May 12, 2020 / 11:20 AM / 23 days ago

Sri Lanka shares fall as consumer, industrial stocks weigh

May 12 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan stocks closed sharply lower on Tuesday, weighed by consumer discretionary and Industrial stocks, as investors returned to stock markets this week after a long shutdown imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus infections.

** The benchmark stock index closed down 3.3% at 4,247.95. Sri Lanka’s stock market reopened on Monday after a 52-day shutdown, but closed early as shares repeatedly hit the lower circuit.

** The island nation, which is heavily dependent on tourism, has reported 856 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and nine deaths as of Monday.

** Shares of conglomerate John Keells Holdings tumbled 14%, while Ceylon Tobacco slid 10% on Tuesday.

** Trading volume on the CSE All Share Index was at 193.4 million, higher than Monday’s 4.41 million.

** Foreign investors were net sellers in the equity market, off loading 217.5 million Sri Lankan rupees ($1.16 million) worth of shares, according to exchange data.

** The Sri Lankan rupee was last quoted at 188 against the U.S. dollar as of 1019 GMT, according to Refinitiv data.

** Equity market turnover was 3.65 billion Sri Lankan rupees, data showed.

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$1 = 181.8500 Sri Lankan rupees Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel

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