PSEi settles near 14-month high

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The main index for Philippine shares hit its highest level since May 2013 in Friday trade after the country’s headline inflation showed an easing in June and positive jobs data from the United States buoyed other global markets.

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Jonathan Ravelas, chief market strategist of BDO Unibank Inc., said in a text message trading was mainly supported by better-than-expected June inflation data and positive sentiment on Wall Street following the report of lower unemployment in the US.

“[These] pushed the market barometer to break out of a two-month long consolidation,” Ravelas said.

For the month of June, the Philippine Statistics Authority announced that inflation eased to 4.4 percent from 4.5 percent last month.

Meanwhile, Lexter Azurin, research analyst at Unicapital Securities Inc. said the favorable jobs report in the US showed signs of a strengthening US economy.
“As a result, investors were bullish with Friday’s trading,” Azurin said.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) closed the week at 6,962.28, up 62.97 points or 0.91 percent, while the wider all shares added 29.50 points, or 0.71 percent to finish at 4,149.59.

This is the highest level the PSEi has reached since May 2013, when the index achieved an all-time high of 7,392.20 just prior to signals from the US Federal Reserve that it would begin tapering its massive monetary stimulus program.

Among the individual sectors, property led with an additional 38.36 points, or 1.47 percent to close at 2,654.29, followed by mining and oil, up 150.78 points, or 0.91 percent to 16,743.75. Holding firms improved by 56.01 points, or 0.89 percent to 6,328.25; services increased by 17.45 points, or 0.85 percent to 2,081.72.

Financials also ended in the green, advancing by 7.17 points, or 0.43 percent to 1,666.51, while industrials added 36.91 points, or 0.35 percent to finish the week at 10,465.79.

Market participation was a bit more active Friday with 2.2 billion shares worth P8.8 billion changing hands. Advancers beat decliners, 93 to 85, while 47 issues were unchanged.

Some of the most actively traded stocks were Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co., up 0.53 percent to P3,016; Ayala Land Inc., up 1.80 percent to P31.05; BDO Unibank Inc., down 0.05 percent to P92.90; and SM Prime Holdings Inc., up 2.10 percent to P16.56.

In corporate developments, listed agribusiness firm Vitarich Corp. said it is set to apply to the rehabilitation court for a declaration that the rehabilitation of the company has been successfully completed.

Despite this announcement, the shares of Vitarich declined 2.22 percent to P0.88 on Friday.

In Thursday’s morning session the bourse flirted with the 6,900-mark, before retreating slightly to finish the day up 48.71 points, or 0.71 percent at 6,899.31. The wider all shares added 25.50 points, or 0.62 percent to close at 4,129.99 on Thursday.

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