Thin stock trading seen in Lent week

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Philippine shares are seen trading flat this week in thin volumes, with many investors expected to be out of the market given the shortened trading week.

The markets will be closed on April 17 (Thursday) and April 18 (Friday) in observance of the Holy Week. Trading resumes on Monday (April 21).

Nisha Alicer, analyst at DA Market Securities, Inc., said investors do not anticipate any market-moving news at home or abroad. “Thin or flat trading may be expected ahead of the Holy Week. Next week is a three-day trading week. We maintain a buy on dip or weakness at market supports as earnings season comes to a close,” she said.

Last week, the market seesawed to and from the 6,600-points level times before settling at the 6,500-level on Friday.


“Technically, [the]market can pull back or consolidate from overbought conditions with initial support at 6482,” Alicer said, adding that the index is still quite resilient, closing at 6,596 points.

For the year ahead, the main index could go as high as 7,000 points even with the current volatility caused by global uncertainty, analysts said.

Jonathan Ravelas, analyst at BDO Unibank, Inc., said the market is poised to breach the 7,000-level within the year despite its inability to stay on that level throughout last year.

“The market is just emotional because of volatility but it will continue to rally,” Ravelas said during the 2014 Business Journalism Seminar organized in Baguio over the weekend, which was organized by the Economic Journalists Association of the Philippines.

Another analyst, Juanis Barredo, chief technical analyst at COL Financial Philippines, added that even though Philippine stocks are expected to remain in consolidation over the next few quarters, it is still ahead of other emerging markets [EMs].

“There will be standouts and good pockets of activity as depicted in the year to date returns of about 2 percent . . . clearly higher than many other EMs that are expressly negative year to date,” Barredo said.

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