NNPC report

Shares driven higher by fuel prices

Nigerian stocks rose to their highest level since January on Friday as investors bought shares in petrol marketers following this week’s deregulation of fuel imports, traders said.

The main index climbed 2.2 percent to 26,439 points, with the banking, petroleum and food sectors leading gains.

Shares in Oando Plc rose 10.2 percent to 5.29 naira as investors bought up gasoline retailers.

The local unit of French oil major Total also gained 6.02 percent, Forte Oil rose 4.99 percent, while Eternal Oil jumped 9.78 percent.

On Wednesday, the Nigerian government said independent fuel importers were now allowed to obtain dollars from the country’s “parallel market” to help ease acute shortages.

Traders said investors expected that with the deregulation of the import market, fuel retailers would be able to improve margins and boost profitability, driving investor interest.

Investors are seen positive outlook for the stock of oil retailers in view of the new government policy on fuel prices, which would allow petrol importers to determine their selling price,” one stock trader said.

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