Local stocks fell sharply Monday, tracking the weak sentiment across regional markets that were hit anew by jitters over the US Federal Reserve’s tapering of easy money policy.
Unable to stay afloat the 6,500 barrier, the main-share Philippine Stock Exchange slid by 181.57 points or 2.79 percent to close at 6,318.91. Stock markets across the region were mostly in the red as improving jobs data in the United States bolstered expectations of an imminent unwinding of the Fed’s quantitative easing or bond buyback activities.
At the local market, all counters faltered but the most battered were the industrial and holding firm counters which both slid by over 3 percent.
Value turnover, however, was still thin at P5.49 billion. There were four decliners for every single gainer.
Jose Mari Lacson, head of research at stockbrokerage Campos Lanuza & Co., said there were still foreign funds dumping local equities. “You could say that the selldown two weeks ago was overdone but at the end of the day, there are fundamental reasons why they are exiting.”
Lacson said the main index might again slide below 6,000 but like in the previous fall, any decline close to the 5,900-6,000 might attract bargain hunters.
The day’s biggest index decliners were DMCI (-5.78 percent) and Aboitiz Power (-5.68 percent) while Robinsons Land, SM Investments, Ayala Corp., SMC and Universal Robina all lost more than 4 percent. Metro Pacific Investment, Jollibee and Globe fell by more than 3 percent. Doris C. Dumlao