Stocks dip as MH17 crash spooks investors

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Philippine shares ended the week slightly lower as the news that a Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down over Ukraine spooked investors, sparking a shift to safe haven assets.

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“It was primarily driven by the Malaysia Airlines tragedy. It caused panic, fear and uncertainty,” Richard Liboro, director at BPI Securities, said, adding that as a result, some investors shifted to gold or bonds.

“But despite all this negative news flow, the market is only down by 14 points. There is resilience and opportunities for some investors to take over,” he said.

Nonetheless, the uncertainty surrounding the Malaysian carrier’s crash may weigh on the local market until next week, he said.

Liboro noted the market would be “consolidative” in the short term, caused mostly by external and global factors. “There might be a negative bias, might go on until Monday. A little drag in the short term, correction,” Liboro said.

“But it’s a good sign that the market is showing resilience,” he added.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) slipped by 0.21 percent or 14.29 points to 6,853.07, while the All Shares index also dipped by 0.15 percent or 6.21 points to 4,106.37.

Sectoral indices were mixed. Financials were little changed, up less than one point or 0.04 percent at 1,651.62, while industrials lost 18.45 points or 0.18 percent to 10,293.99.

Mining and oil gained 12.02 points or 0.07 percent to 16,667.12, but property dropped 16.73 points or 0.64 percent to 2,608.80.

Services dipped 4.91 points or 0.24 percent or to 2,074.26 and holding firms also lost 0.24 percent or 15.04 points or to 6,165.85.

Among Friday’s most actively traded stocks, only Ayala Land Inc. ended flat at P30.85 per share while six issues posted losses and three recorded gains. .

Losers include PLDT (down 0.07 percent or P2 to P3,028 apiece), SM Investments Corp. (down 1.09 percent or P8.50 at P774 each) and SM Prime Holdings (down 1.63 percent or 26 centavos at P15.74 per share).

Gainers, on the other hand, were Universal Robina Corp. (up 0.64 percent or P1 at P158 per share), Philex Mining Corp. (up 3.50 percent or 40 centavos at P11.84 per share) and Ayala Corp. (up 0.23 percent or P1.50 at P654 per share).

Decliners outnumbered advancers 94 to 72, while 52 stocks were unchanged. Total trading volume was 589.5 million shares valued at P5.269 billion.

On Thursday, the PSEi gained 0.49 percent or 33.32 points to 6,867.26, buoyed by strong global markets although tempered by some uncertainty in the wake of Typhoon Glenda and the Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP) scandal. The broader All Shares index also rose 0.29 percent or 11.97 points to 4,112.58.

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