A swarm of small investors yesterday demonstrated in front of the Dhaka Stock Exchange building to protest a sharp fall in share prices.
Some retail investors, under the banner of Bangladesh Share Investors' Association (BSIA), demanded government intervention to bring back normalcy to the market.
DSEX, the benchmark general index of DSE, broke its psychological level of 4,500 points after two months and fell 1.18 percent or 53.47 points to 4,466.08.
DSES, the shariah index of DSE, closed at 967.97 points, after falling 10.77 points or 1.10 percent.
The frequent change in decisions taken by Bangladesh Bank on banks' exposure to the stockmarket pulled the market down, said Mizanur Rashid Chowdhury, president of BSIA. On February 25, the central bank instructed banks to give a breakdown of daily investment in stocks in the monthly report submitted to the central bank on the 10th of every month.
At present, the banks just give their total investment figure to BB, which it believes does not reflect the true picture.
“We want proper coordination between BB and Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission in the interest of the investors,” said Chowdhury.
As sentiments were shaky amid a gloomy investment outlook, a bearish spell remained strong and dominated the market throughout the session, according to IDLC Investments.
In addition, investors' participation was sluggish, keeping turnover below Tk 300 crore for the third consecutive session, the investment banker said.
Turnover, the most important indicator of the market, advanced 22.82 percent to Tk 299 crore from the previous day.
Investors stopped pumping money into the market as the advance-to-decline ratio stood at 67 to 188, said LankaBangla Securities.
The market lost some ground on cue of panic sales after BB ruled to reduce banks' capital market exposure, the stockbroker said.
A total of 0.81 lakh trades were executed with 5.52 crore shares and mutual fund units changing hands on the Dhaka bourse.
All the major sectors were in the red: banks 0.7 percent, non-bank financial institutions 1.08 percent and power 1 percent.
Textiles slipped 1.2 percent yesterday despite news of a government stimulus package for the sector to recoup losses from last year's political unrest.
Emerald Oil Industries featured in the most traded stocks chart with 35.79 lakh shares worth Tk 19 crore changing hands followed by Bangladesh Shipping Corporation, Square Pharma and Lafarge Surma Cement.
Renwick Jajneswar, the biggest gainer of the day, rose 8.74 percent, while Bangladesh Finance and Investment was the worst loser, plunging 7.57 percent.