Following the slight sell-offs that trailed the new administration-inspired rally, local equities embraced corporate actions/announcements as key catalysts in August. Notably, the disclosure on the proposed merger of DANGSUGAR, NASCON, and Dangote Rice Limited was released on the 1st of August 2023. GSK UK also disclosed its intention to cease commercialising its prescription medicines and vaccines through the GSK local operating companies and plans to transit to a third-party distribution model two days later. The disclosure also highlighted the consequent decision of GSK Nigeria to cease operations in Nigeria, with its next steps expected to include submission of a scheme of arrangement to SEC and drive accelerated cash distribution and return of capital to shareholders. In the light above, there were strong rallies in the share prices of the linked companies, with DANGSUGAR, NASCON, and GSK accelerating by 103.7%, 55.5%, and 87.8% MoM, respectively.

Elsewhere, there were strong rallies in TRANSCORP (+72.0%), BUAFOODS (+32.6), SEPLAT (+8.5%), MTNN (+4.8%), and DANGCEM (+2.3%). The performances appear to reflect reactions to strong earnings (BUAFOODS), expected expansion drives and corporate action (TRANSCORP), and general bargain-hunting activities. However, activity metrics declined from July highs as average volume (-63.3%) and value (- 65.5%) traded declined to 397.84 million units and N5.78 billion.

Unsurprisingly, Consumer Goods (+24.5%) led sectoral gains, expectedly benefitting from the mentioned price rallies in DANGSUGAR, NASCON, and BUAFOODS. The Insurance, Oil & Gas, and Industrials sectors also closed in positive territory, inspired by the gains in CORNERST (+59.1%), SEPLAT (+8.5%), and WAPCO (+9.2%). Elsewhere, selloffs in STANBIC (-6.5%) and FBNH (-6.7%) weighed the banking index.