December 28, 2016 / 12:00 PM / 7 months ago

Sri Lankan shares rise nearly 0.5 pct in high turnover

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COLOMBO, Dec 28 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed about half a percent higher on Wednesday, recovering from a more than eight-month closing low hit in the previous session, led by blue chips such as John Keells Holdings and Hatton National Bank.

Turnover was 1.73 billion rupees ($11.59 million), more than twice the daily average of 739.5 million rupees for this year. Commercial Bank of Ceylon and Sunshine Holdings accounted for 48.3 percent and 44 percent of the turnover, respectively.

The Colombo stock index finished 0.41 percent higher at 6,228.51, bouncing back from its lowest close since April 6 hit in the prior session. It shed around 2.1 percent in the 10 sessions through Tuesday.

"Blue chips lifted the market. I think it was mostly due to window dressing ahead of the year-end," said Atchuthan Srirangan, a senior research analyst with First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd.

Foreign investors bought a net 16.2 million rupees worth shares on Wednesday, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflows to 627.5 million rupees in equities.

Top conglomerate John Keells rose 1.1 percent, while Hatton National Bank gained 2.65 percent. Commercial Bank of Ceylon closed 2.1 percent higher, while Sunshine ended flat. ($1 = 149.3000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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