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Stocks end lower

Local stocks weakened for the third straight session Monday as investors across the region turned cautious ahead of the “ghost month” and a forthcoming US Federal open market committee (FOMC) meeting.

The main-share Philippine Stock Exchange index lost 45.96 points or 0.68 percent to close at 6,717.66.

Across the region, stock markets were mostly in the red as investors awaited the stream of second-quarter corporate earnings results, further clues on US monetary policy from the July 30-31 FOMC meeting while some investors remained on the sidelines as the “ghost month” drew nearer. The so-called “ghost month” from Aug. 7 to Sept. 4 is expected to result in meager trading volumes in the market.

Volume turnover amounted to P5.7 billion. There were only 59 advancers, 101 decliners while 34 stocks were unchanged.

By counter, the financial sub-index was the most battered

(-1.86 percent) as second-quarter profit growths were seen mostly slower compared to the first quarter.

On the other hand, the mining/oil counter was the day’s outperformer (+3.7 percent) led by Lepanto (+25 percent) after the mining firm led by businessman Felipe Yap obtained consent from indigenous people to proceed with the Far Southeast gold mining venture with Gold Fields in Mankayan, Benguet.

Among index stocks, the laggers were Jollibee (-3.99 percent) and BPI (-2.89 percent) while RLC, MWC and Metrobank all declined by more than 2 percent. Semirara, Philex, SM Prime, Ayala Land and AEV all fell. Doris C. Dumlao


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