Philippine stocks surged for the fourth straight year in 2012, rising by about 33 percent this year on favorable macroeconomic and corporate performance.
On the last trading day of the year, the main-share Philippine Stock Exchange index gained 17.84 points or 0.31 percent to close at 5,812.73.
“Market ended the year way above our expectations. We closed today with a loud bang. It’s a vote of confidence of investors for the market’s sustained performance next year,” said Astro del Castillo, managing director at investment management firm First Grade.
“No doubt we will continue to hear a lot of fireworks for 2013,” Del Castillo said.
While there had been window-dressing on the last trading session of 2012, the stock market was described to have performed well for most of the year.
In fact, the index has been on an upswing since 2009, coming out of a global financial crisis the previous year.
In 2012, the local bourse was one of the best performers in the region, gaining 1,440.77 points from the end-2011 closing of 4,371.96.
Also, the market broke the index record 38 times this year.
“2012 was a good year for the stock market,” veteran stock broker and former PSE president Ramon Garcia said. “Investors are happy that the listed companies gave them reasonable returns on their money. Stock brokers too see their bottom lines on a positive note.”
Garcia, president of stock brokerage RTG & Co., added the PSEi could break out of the 6,000 level by January next year.
The 2012 closing level was not too far from the record finish of 5,832.83 posted on Dec. 26. The intraday peak reached 5,866.83 last Dec. 3.
Elsewhere across the region, stock markets were mostly higher on hopes that US officials would strike a last-minute budget deal to avoid a “fiscal cliff”—a series of tax increases and drastic spending cuts that could push the US economy into another recession next year.
At the local market, value turnover for the day amounted to P7.87 billion, buoyed by yearend window-dressing. There were 101 advancers against 83 decliners, while 35 stocks were unchanged.
The biggest gainers were URC, JGS, Semirara, SMC, ALI, AGI, FGEN, EDC and AC.
BDO, SMIC, MWC and AP also contributed gains.
On the other hand, JFC, SM Prime, Globe, RLC, PLDT, BPI, DMCI, Meralco, Megaworld and Belle fell on profit-taking during the last trading day.