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JM | Dec 19, 2020

Low investor interest in Jamaican stock market fuelled by economy uncertainty

/ Our Today

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Manufacturing, other sectors account for most of declining stocks for September 2020 quarter

The Jamaica Stock Exchange in downtown Kingston.

The weak performance in the Jamaican equities market so far in 2020 reflects low investor interest due to continued uncertainty about the prospects for the local economy, stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the third quarter ended September 2020, all the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) indices recorded declines. Stock price appreciation during the quarter was largely concentrated in financial sector stocks.

The manufacturing and other sector stocks accounted for most of the declining stocks for the September 2020 quarter as per data coming from the Bank of Jamaica. As at the end of November 2020, the JSE main and junior market indices both trended downwards since the start of the year.

The main market declined by 21.64 per cent while the junior exchange dipped by 24.87 per cent, as at November 30, 2020. Month over month, both markets appreciated by 6.44 per cent in the case of the main market and 1.86 per cent in the case of the junior exchange.

Palace Amusement Company Ltd., which saw its cinemas like Carib 5 shut down for extended periods during the COVID-19 pandemic, suffered a 55.17 per cent decline in stock price in 2020.

Trade statistics

The value and number of transactions on both markets have declined and may be influenced by the environment’s current sentiment. Year to date, the transactions on the main market trended upwards by 41.02 per cent, while volumes and value fell 24.20 per cent and 50.36 per cent, respectively.

Relative to November 2019, the number of transactions completed on the main market rose 4.23 per cent, as volumes saw an increase of 6.09 per cent over October’s outturn. The number of transactions completed as at November 30, 2020, amounted to 158,950 relative to 112,718 as at November 2019.

As of November 30, 2020, volumes and value stood at 6.24 billion units (November 2019: 8.23 billion units) and $42.24 billion (November 2019: $91.76 billion).

Main Market Trade Statistics

Transactions on the junior market trended upwards year to date (54.35 per cent), while volumes and value fell 38.94 per cent and 51.26 per cent, respectively. Relative to November 2019, the number of transactions completed on the junior market rose to 89.44 per cent, as volumes saw an increase of 85.47 per cent over November 2019’s outturn.

The number of transactions completed as at November 30, 2020, amounted to 61,697 relative to 39,971 as at November 2019. Volumes and value as at November 30, 2020, stood at 1.56 billion units (November 2019: 2.87 billion units) and $4.18 billion (November 2019: $9.39 billion).

Top Advancers and Decliners

Key Insurance Ltd was the top year-to-date advancer.

For November 2020, the main market’s month-over-month top advancer was Margaritaville (Turks) Ltd, which opened the month at $42.60 and ended at $56.23, representing a 32 per cent increase. The top decliner was 138 Student Living Jamaica Ltd, after opening November 2020 at $4.89 and closing at $4.00, representing an 18.20 per cent decline.

The top year-to-date advancer, Key Insurance Company Ltd, saw a 226.56 per cent uptick after opening at $3.20 and closing at $10.45. The top year-to-date decliner was Palace Amusement Company Ltd., which saw a decline of 55.17 per cent after opening 2020 at $2,900.

KLE Group Ltd, operators of Usain Bolt’s Tracks and Records and other venues, was the junior market’s month-over-month top advancer for November. (Photo: Facebook @UBTandR)

The junior market’s month-over-month top advancer for November 2020 was K.L.E Group Ltd., which opened the month at $1.10 and ended at $1.45, representing a 31.82 per cent increase. The top one-month decliner, CAC 2000 Ltd, opened the month at $14.75 and ended at $10.00, representing a 32.20 per cent decline.

The top year-to-date advancer, Caribbean Flavours & Fragrances Ltd., saw an 18 per cent uptick, after opening at $1.50 and closing at $1.77. The top year-to-date decliner, Stationery and Office Supplies Ltd, saw a decline of 59.17 per cent after opening at $11.02 and closing the period at $4.50.

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