• Stocks fall in ‘welcome correction’


    Philippine shares drifted off their record peak further in a second consecutive day of a “welcome correction” on Friday, with profit-takers cashing in their gains ahead of the tax month.

    The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) slipped 0.44 percent or 33.82 points to 7,730.57, while the All Shares index lost 0.27 percent or 12.08 points to 4,498.61.

    Harry Liu, president of Summit Securities Inc., said the market “welcomed the (bout of) profit-taking” that pushed prices lower, breaking a long run that had driven the PSEi to multiple peaks in the first two months of the year.

    “The PSEi is now down – that’s for the second day. For the past few days, there’s really been no development that could pull the market up to 7,800. Now, the correction is most welcome, the market will continue to consolidate,” Liu said.

    “Profit-taking was likely (to happen) because of March being the tax month. It’s already the tax month, so everybody is preparing for a cash position, taking in slight profit-taking (pressure). If there is any sudden positive news, then we can hit 7,800 again,” he added.

    Looking further ahead, Liu said despite a projected short-term consolidation, the market is still poised to hit 8,000 points before the end of the year given a sound macroeconomic climate.

    “We have to go through the consolidation. For now, there’s no news that can make the market run up to 7,800. The underlying trend is that, the long term is still upward-looking to the 8,000 levels. The consolidation is just cyclical, that’s every year. Unless there is something new coming up that will boost the market, it will be in a consolidation (phase),” Liu said, adding he sees support at 7,600 and resistance at 7,800.

    The industrial index rose 1.67 percent, while mining and oil also gained 0.51 percent. The rest of the sectoral indices, however, declined, led by property, which fell 1.22 percent.

    Active shares were mixed — gainers were Jollibee Foods Corp., Universal Robina Corp., Metro Pacific Investments Corp., Megaworld Corp., and Puregold Price Club Inc. while losers included SM Prime Holdings Inc., SM Investments Corp. and Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co.

    Decliners outnumbered advancers 92 to 74, while 53 issues ended unchanged.
    Volume of trade stood at 2.09 billion, valued at P7.5 billion.

    On Thursday, the bellwether PSEi broke a nine-day rally, losing 1.02 percent or 79.67 points to 7,764.39, while the wider All Shares dipped 0.78 percent or 35.33 points to 4,510.69.


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