LOCAL stocks were slightly firmer on Tuesday on the back of quarter-end window-dressing activity and optimism about the prospects of the economy, as discussed at the Philippine Economic Briefing the same day.
The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) added 17.71 points or 0.24 percent to 7,283.07, while the wider All Shares index inched up 3.48 points or 0.08 percent to 4,305.45.
April Lynn Tan, head of research at online brokerage firm COL Financial Group Inc., said that the market was influenced by window- dressing activities as the third quarter draws to a close.
Window-dressing refers to the practice by some fund managers of selling poorly performing stocks and purchasing high-flying stocks near the end of the quarter to improve their portfolios for reporting purposes.
“I think part of it is end-of-quarter window-dressing. There is no specific news to pull the market down,” Tan said.
“In the next few days, the market will still continue to be volatile. I think the major concern is the peso depreciation because foreign investors are wary. But it’s not really based on a day-to-day assessment. We have to observe the market and the peso movement first before we could see correlative effects between the two,” she added.
For his part, Justino Calaycay Jr. of Accord Capital Equities Corp. said in a phone interview that the market was boosted by window dressing as well as the positive reaction of investors following the Philippine Economic Briefing held Tuesday morning.
“I think there is a lack of bad news today, nothing bad at all. A while ago at the economic briefing, we were looking at how the Philippines has fared since 2010. And sure enough, the economy is more or less on track with its targets despite the first quarter being weak. But we could still hit the economic targets, which is a positive indication for the market,” Calaycay said.
“As we move on, those make good prospects for the market in the fourth quarter,” he added.
By sector, financials were up 10.46 points or 0.62 percent at 1,707.06; industrials rose 146.80 points or 1.27 percent to 11,718.83; and property advanced 6.96 points or 0.24 percent to 2,863.52.
On the other hand, holding firms declined 6.87 points or 0.11 percent to 6,414.97; services slipped 0.91 points or 0.04 percent to 2,131.92; while mining and oil dropped 437.25 points or 2.49 percent to 17,127.26
Among the 10 most actively traded stocks, Megaworld Corp. ended flat while Nickel Asia Corp was the sole loser.
The top gainers were Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., Energy Development Corp., Ayala Land Inc., Emperador Inc., BDO Unibank Inc., Universal Robina Corp., Metropolitan Trust and Bank Co. and Security Bank Corp.
The total volume of shares traded reached 4.28 billion shares valued at P12.428 billion. Decliners outnumbered advancers 102 to 85, while 43 shares did not move.
On Monday, the benchmark index went up 4.06 points or 0.06 percent to 7,265.36, while the All Shares index added 0.52 points or 0.01 percent to 4,301.97.