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PSE index continues to slide

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PSE BGC board

THE Philippine stock market ended the quarter in the red, as the month-end’s window dressing failed to stem the market’s continued slide.

The bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) edged down 0.6% or 43.77 points to 7,276.82. The broader all-shares index fell 0.42% or 18.89 points to 4,464.92.

The property sub-index slumped by 2.37% or 87.73 points to 3,620.84, while industrial went down 1.24% or 133.36 points to 10,647.53. Holding firms slid 0.83% or 60.07 points to 7,159.93 points. Mining and oil dropped 0.79% or 71.22 points.

Meanwhile, financials gained 1.94% or 30.8 points to 1,620.56, while services inched up 0.66% or 0.84 points to 1,494.97.

“Investors sold on news after it was confirmed at 5 p.m. yesterday that the BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) would have a 50bps rate hike which was widely expected,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Managing Director Luis A. Limlingan said in a mobile message on Friday.

The Monetary Board raised policy rates by another 50 basis points (bp) on Thursday, marking the fourth consecutive tightening move this year. The (overnight reverse repurchase) key policy rate is now at 4.5%, the highest since March 2009.

The central bank cited persistent signs of sustained and broadening price pressures” as basis for the hike.

The BSP also raised its inflation forecasts for the fifth time to 5.2% in 2018, from the 4.9% previously.

Jervin S. De Celis, trader at Timson Securities, Inc. said window dressing activities of fund managers did not suffice as investors are also cautious ahead of the release of September’s inflation report on Oct. 5.

“Window dressing for the end of 3Q didn’t help much in lifting the index as we wait for a strong catalyst to push the index above 7,500 again,” Mr. de Celis said in a mobile message yesterday.

“We’re a week ahead before the announcement of the inflation rate report for September and investors might stay cautious until we see if the CPI data remains at 6.4% or higher due to the effects of Typhoon Ompong on agricultural goods,” Mr. de Celis added.

As of September 24, farm losses due to Typhoon Ompong (Mangkhut) stood at P26.7 billion, according to the Department of Agriculture.

Decliners trumped advancers, 99 to 85, while 50 issues were unchanged.

Foreigners continued to dump shares although selling eased to P29.14 million compared to Thursday’s P520.5 million net selling.

Value turnover amounted to P6 billion for the 1.02 billion shares that changed hands on Friday, higher than Thursday’s P5.047 billion worth of 667.52 million shares. — Janina C. Lim