PH among JP Morgan’s favored markets

Local bourse seen extending its winning streak in 2013

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11:21 PM February 1st, 2013

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By: Doris C. Dumlao, February 1st, 2013 11:21 PM

Global investment bank JP Morgan has kept the Philippines among its favored stock markets this 2013 with a view that the main local index—despite the strong run-up in the past four years—could extend its winning streak by another 15 percent.

“We’ve been overweight on the Philippines since 2009 and we have no intention of changing that view,” JP Morgan’s chief for Asian and emerging market equity Adrian Moet said in a briefing Friday.

“From the perspective of the international equity investor, the Philippines is delivering low currency risk, high economic growth and high (corporate) earnings growth and that’s a very attractive proposition particularly against a still quite troubled world,” said Moet, who flew in from Singapore to speak in a forum organized by JP Morgan for large institutional investors keen on Philippine equities.

The forum this year, attended by around 70 institutional investors—mostly long-term investors who are new to the Philippines—is the biggest so far in the last seven years that JP Morgan has conducted such briefings to pitch local equities to the foreign market.

For 2013, the Philippines joins Mexico, Turkey, Thailand and India among the countries where JP Morgan has an “overweight” rating. “Overweight” is a recommendation to accumulate stocks in excess of a benchmark index, usually the closely-tracked MSCI index.

Moet said good macroeconomic stability, improving policies and prospects of demographic dividends—referring to a large pool of human resources reaching working age—were common to most of these markets (except Thailand).

On the other hand, JP Morgan has an “underweight” recommendation on Brazil, Taiwan and South Korea.  The investment firm has a “neutral” rating on China.

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