Market breaches 8,000, relieved RW attacker not a terrorist

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SHARE prices rebounded on Monday, driving the benchmark PSEi above the 8000-level as the market was relieved that the lone gunman who attacked the Resorts World Manila casino was a gambling addict and not a terrorist.

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Gains on Wall Street over the weekend also helped market sentiment.

The PSEi rallied 1.19 percent, or 93.72 points to close at 8,001.38, while the broader All Shares rose 0.94 percent, or 44.14 points to finish at 4,760.27.

“Investors might just be relieved that the Resorts World Manila case seems isolated and not a terrorist event,” COL Financial Research Head April Tan said.

A lone gunman, identified as Jessie Carlos, 43, barged into Resorts World Manila just after midnight on Friday, firing shots and setting tables ablaze. At least 37 guests and employees died from smoke inhalation and at 54 others were injured. Carlos’ charred body was later found dead in Room 510 of adjacent Maxim’s Hotel.

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria claimed responsibility for the attack, but police said the terrorist group was simply trying get credited for the incident and ruled out any links to terrorism.

Regina Capital Corp. Managing Director Luis Limlingan said the market “touched another milestone as the index … settled at the 8,000 level for the first time this year.”

The last time the benchmark PSEi traded at the 8,000 mark was on July 28, 2016, when it closed at 8,024.54 in July 2016.

“Sentiment from Friday was carried over after US equities rose to record levels … as Wall Street shrugged off a jobs report that came in well below expectations,” Limlingan said.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rose by 0.29 percent on Friday, the S&P 500 increased by 0.37 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq climbed 0.94 percent—all discounting the US Labor department’s report that nonfarm payrolls increased only by 138,000 in May, as compared to the expected 182,000.

Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) President Ramon Monzon noted the optimism could be attributed to the Department of Finance’s Comprehensive Tax Reform Program (CTRP).

President Rodrigo Duterte has certified the urgency of the CTRP and the House of Representatives promptly passed the House Bill 5636, which contained the CTRP, before adjourned on Wednesday. The tax reform package is estimated to generate additional revenues of P130 billion for the government in the first year of implementation.

All sectoral indices were in the green. Financials were up 1.57 percent, Services gained 1.39 percent, Holding Firms went up 1.36 percent, Mining and Oil rose by 1.20 percent), Property advanced by 0.92 percent and Industrials added 0.14 percent.

Among the most actively traded issues, SM Investments Corp. was registered the highest gain at 2.93 percent, SM Prime Holdings rose by 2.52 percent and GT Capital Holdings Inc. and PLDT Inc. were up 2.08 percent.

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