COLOMBO, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares fell for a second straight session on Monday to hit their lowest close in more than eight months as investors offloaded plantation and telecom stocks.
The Colombo Stock Index ended 0.09 percent weaker at 6,346.70, its lowest close since April 11. It lost 0.4 percent last week, its sixth consecutive weekly decline.
“It’s yet another dull day and we don’t have any positive news to boost the market,” said Atchuthan Srirangan, senior research analyst at First Capital Holdings PLC.
Plantation stocks came under pressure after the Russian agricultural safety watchdog said on Thursday that the country will place temporary restrictions on imports of all agricultural products from Sri Lanka, including tea, from Dec. 18.
Analysts said the Russian restrictions on tea could pose a threat to long-term tea prices and it could impact the earnings of plantation companies.
Turnover was 233 million rupees ($1.52 million), the lowest since Sept.25, and well below this year’s daily average of 935.9 million rupees.
Foreign investors were net buyers of 71.8 million rupees worth of shares on Monday, extending their year-to-date net equity purchases to 18.4 billion rupees.
Shares of Hemas Holdings Plc ended 1.2 percent lower, while Hatton National Bank Plc fell 0.4 percent and Sri Lanka Telecom Plc lost 1.4 percent. ($1 = 153.1500 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal; Editing by Vyas Mohan)