The equity segment of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) on Thursday sustained an upward trend, as the benchmark indices improved by 0.33 percent as against 1.51 percent loss recorded at the close of trading on Wednesday.

The All-Share Index crossed to 43,090.55 points from 42,952.70 points attained the previous day having added 137.85 absolute points representing a growth of 0.33 percent.

Similarly, the Market Capitalisation was up N50.27 billion to close at N15.48 trillion from the opening value of N15.43 trillion.

Trading figures showed that market breadth closed positively, recording 30 gainers against 28 losers.

The upturn was impacted by gains recorded in medium and large capitalized stocks, as Unilever Plc led other gainers with N4.50 or 7.49 percent to close at N64.60 from N60.10 per share.

It was trailed by Stanbic IBTC Bank. The lender advanced by N2.35 or five percent to close at N49.35 from N47 per share; FBN Holdings added 55 kobo or 4.87 percent to close at N11.85 from N1130 per share.

Guaranty Trust Bank Plc surged by N1.40 or 2.94 percent to close at N49.00 from N47.60 per share, while Flourmill added N1.00 or 2.78 percent to close at N37.00 from N36.00 per share.

Conversely, Presco led on the losers’ table with N3.65 or 4.68 percent to close at N74.35 as against N78.00 per share.

Union Bank Plc trailed with 30 kobo or 4.08 percent to close at N7.05 from N7.35 per share, Capital Oil dropped two kobo or 4.17 percent to close at 46 kobo from 48 kobo per share, NASCON trimmed by 20 kobo or 0.81 percent to close at N2.55 from N25.75 per share.

Zenith Bank Plc dipped 20 kobo or 0.64 percent to close at N31.00 from N31.20 per share.

In all, investors exchanged 574 million shares valued at N3.40 billion traded in 4,340 deals.

Meanwhile, the Naira at the inter-bank market remained unchanged at N305.80 against Wednesday’s closing price, while the Investors and Exporters (I&E) FX window opened at N359.94, and traded high at N361.00, eventually closing at N360.26 representing 0.02 percent depreciation against previous closing price.

A total of $120.43 million was transacted through the I&E window on Thursday.

Finance and investment analysts at Apt Securities and Funds Limited said: “We expect the FX market to trade within existing range in the next session.”

OBB and O/N rates closed at 9.50 percent and 10.25 percent, representing a 1.83 percent and 2.25 percent depreciation against yesterday’s closing position respectively.

“We expect the money market to trade within existing range in the next session,” said Apt Securities.