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Sri Lankan shares lifted by financial stocks

June 11 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares closed up on Friday, fuelled by financial stocks, even as cases of the alpha and delta variants of the coronavirus were found in the island nation.

* The CSE All-Share Index ended up 0.12% at 7,610.30 The index, which has fallen only during two sessions in June, is up 12.3% for the year.

* Sri Lanka reported 2,738 confirmed coronavirus cases on Friday, taking the total to 216,134, while the death toll reached 1,985, according to health ministry data here.

* Dr Chandima Jeewandara, a top health expert, said here on Thursday that the alpha variant has been found in 80 people in multiple locations, while the delta variant has been detected in one person at a quarantine facility.

* Army Commander General Shavendra Silva said on Thursday that the current travel restrictions imposed in the country will be removed from June 14.

* Palm oil cultivator Shalimar Estates jumped 23% and was the top boost to the index. Cigarette maker Ceylon Tobacco Company Plc and ice cream maker Ceylon Cold Stores Plc also boosted the index, rising 0.6% and 1.6%, respectively.

* Trading volume fell to 103.8 million from 140.9 million in the previous session.

* Foreign investors were net sellers in the equity market, offloading shares worth 170.4 million Sri Lankan rupees ($864,974.62), exchange data showed.

* The Sri Lankan rupee was quoted at 197 against the U.S. dollar, as of 1149 GMT, 0.25% stronger for the day compared to last session’s close of 197.50, according to Refinitiv data.

* Equity market turnover was 2.28 billion rupees, according to exchange data.

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* For a report on major currencies, click

($1 = 197.0000 Sri Lankan rupees)

Reporting by Shivani Singh in Bengaluru and Waruna Karunatilake in Colombo; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel

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