Golden Sibanda Senior Business Reporter
TRADES on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange plunged by 43,1 percent to $50 million year-to- date in a demonstration of weak sentiment and the tighter liquidity prevailing on the bourse.
The recent negative publicity on the stock exchange over the dealings of its chief executive over the Meikles Limited suspension and subsequent reinstatement and the manner in which he is running the exchange has not helped the situation either as the benchmark Industrials Index lost 1.57 points (0,94 percent) to 165,59 compared to week ending 27 February 2015.
Statistics from ZSE show that the value of trades amounted to $16,06 million in January against $63,73 million in the same period last year.
Trades were higher in February this year at $34,78 million than last year’s $25,67 million. It remains to be seen whether trades in March, currently at $5,32 million, will be able to eclipse year’s figure of $27 million.
The decline in liquidity on ZSE has also reflected in the decrease in value of trades in major stocks on the domestic market that include Delta, Econet, Innscor, Seed Co, British American Tobacco and CBZ.
Trades in Delta retreated 11 percent to $20,3 million, Econet eased 1 percent to $17,6 million, Innscor backtracked 3 percent to $4,5 million, Seed Co plunged 91 percent to $2,5 million, BAT fell 24 percent to $1,7 million while CBZ eased 10 percent to $1,4 million since the beginning of the year.
Turnover was 93,53 percent up for the month of February with average daily trades coming in at $1,72 million on significant contributions from heavyweight stocks.
Total volumes traded went up by 97,73 percent to 107 million shares in February. Dominant entities included Delta, Econet and Seed Co.
The market registered moderate recovery in February, rising 0,22 percent to close at a market capitalisation of $4,73 billion with the industrials rising 1,31 percent to 167,16 on the back of gains in heavyweights Delta and Innscor.
The Minings Index dropped further last month to 55,38 weighed down by losses in Falgold, which fell 16,67 percent and RioZim, down 33,33 percent.
The subdued liquidity situation on ZSE comes at a time analysts have predicted flat to marginal growth in profitability for companies currently reporting.