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Nigerian stock index rises as bank shares gain
August 18, 2017 / 2:57 PM / 4 months ago

Nigerian stock index rises as bank shares gain

LAGOS, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Nigerian stocks closed higher on Friday for the second consecutive day, lifted by shares in banking, cement and a consumer goods maker.

The main share index ended up 1.66 percent at 36,920 points after bargain hunters returned to take positions in Guaranty Trust Bank and Zenith Bank , two top lenders shunned early in the week over a disappointing interim dividend payout.

GTbank shares rose 6.47 percent to close at 39.50 naira, while Zenith Bank gained 6.61 percent to close at 24.53 naira.

The index of Nigeria’s top 10 banks gained 3.97 percent to lift the index.

The stock index had dropped to a 16-day low on Wednesday as some investors cashed in profits after recent gains.

The market had rallied for eight consecutive weeks and peaked at a 33-month high last week before profit takers took advantage of the gains.

Other gainers include Dangote Cement, which accounts for a third of the market capitalisation. The cement firm was up 2.37 percent to close at 225 naira, FCMB Group rose 5.36 percent, PZ Cussons gained 4.99 percent while energy company Oando rose 3.94 percent. (Reporting by Oludare Mayowa, editing by David Evans)

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