• PH shares ease as region consolidates

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    SHARE prices on the Philippine Stock Exchange fell by almost a percent on Thursday as the local bourse tracked regional markets that began consolidating due to the Japanese yen strengthening against the US dollar.

    The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi) fell by 0.93 percent or 75.50 points to settle at 8, 024.98, while the broader All Shares index declined by 0.66 percent or 32.03 points to end at 4, 790.67. Total turnover was strong at P10.13 billion.

    Aniceto Pangan, trader at Diversified Securities Inc. said, the “main index should have been up; but unfortunately, yen decided to appreciate today [Thursday] versus the greenback after Fed made a statement that it would gradually increase its interest rates and left it unchanged for the meantime.”

    With the strengthening of the yen, he added, emerging markets, including the Philippines with one of the highest valuations, decided to correct, and many investors embarked on profit taking.

    Investors are also waiting for Japan’s $266 billion stimulus package to be voted on tomorrow [Friday], while the US Federal Reserve has decided to keep its interest rates unchanged at least until September.

    “We will see tomorrow, if the stimulus that Japan wants to inject in its economy would materialize and it is only then we would find out if such stimulus would be enough to cover the turn around of the market,” Pangan added.

    In Thursday’s trading, losers edged out winners 121 to 70, while 53 issues remained unchanged. Most of the sub-indices were in negative territory, and the property sector was the mostly hit. It declined 1.75 percent, followed by the holding firms losing 1.12 percent.

    Meanwhile, the mining and oil sector enjoyed a marginal gain 0.34 percent, with the financial firms moving sideways or 0.11 percent.

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