• Stocks close flat after early boost

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    The local market pushed past the 7,800-point barrier in early trade on Tuesday, but eased to close nearly flat as some investors cashed in on gains from previous record highs.

    The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) inched up 0.03 percent or 2.59 points to 7,776.51 at the closing bell, while the All Shares index was little changed, or up just 0.28 points or 0.006 percent at 4,525.07.
    “There was last-minute buying yesterday and that continued today.

    However, there was profit-taking toward the end so the gains slightly dimmed and we ended just 2.59 points higher,” Anton G. Alfonso, research analyst at RCBC Securities Inc., said.

    Joyce Anne Ramos, AB Capital Securities Inc. analyst, said that the market “tried to retest 7,800 during the morning session” due to record Wall Street performance on Monday night, but failed to hold due to uncertainties on “pending data to be released during the week.”

    The morning trades were led by the positive US markets overnight: Dow Jones was up 155.93 points, the S&P 500 gained 12.89 points, and Nasdaq climbed 44.57 points.

    For his part, Citisecurities Inc. co-head of investments Bryan Gomez said investors succumb to profit take, which will likely continue in the next few days as the market is trying to establish its footing after the sell off last week.

    “The market needs more time to settle. The strength in the morning was an opportunity to sell for some investors,” Gomez said.

    Sectoral indices ended mixed — gainers were financials, holding firms, and mining and oil, while losers included industrial, services and property counters.

    Among the top companies on Tuesday, Ayala Corp. was flat, while Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company and Metro Pacific Investments Corp. declined. Active advancers were GT Capital Holdings Inc., Universal Robina Corp., First Gen Corp., Energy Development Corp., Metropolitan Bank and Trust Company, Jollibee Foods Corp. and DMCI Holdings Inc.

    Total volume amounted to 1.24 billion shares, valued at P6.7 billion. Gainers outpaced losers, 101 to 68, while 47 issues were unchanged.

    On Monday, the bellwether PSEi increased by 0.56 percent or 43.35 points to 7,773.92, while All Shares index was up 0.58 percent or 26.18 points at 4,524.79.

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