Local stock index continues ascent

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PSE index as of 3:46 PM, September 11, 2013

MANILA—The Philippine Stock Exchange index climbed past the 6,200 mark on Wednesday as investors were relieved that a US military strike against Syria appeared less likely to take place.

Gaining for the fourth straight session, the main-share PSE index racked up 125.18 points or 2.06 percent to close at 6,214.90.

Local stock brokerage Regina Capital said Wednesday’s rally was “due to probability of (US) military strike against Syria becoming less likely.”

This came amid reports that US President Obama was willing to pursue a diplomatic solution to the Syria crisis, heeding “encouraging signs.”  Russia earlier proposed to put Syrian chemical weapons under international control.

An escalation of the Syrian war would have resulted in skyrocketing oil prices, which would be bad for an oil-importing country like the Philippines.

The local stock market has seen modest net foreign buying in the last few days, which dealers said may have likewise indicated that concerns over the US Federal Reserve’s tapering of easy money may have been factored in.

All counters were up but the biggest gainer was the property (+3.25 percent) sub-index.  This was ahead of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ monetary rate setting on Thursday (Sept. 12), during which key interest rates are widely expected to be kept at record-low levels.

Turnover amounted to P9.22 billion.

There were 94 advancers against 47 decliners while 41 stocks were unchanged.

The day’s outperformer was Bloomberry (+8 percent) on the expected resolution of gaming tax issues.

Other top gainers were ALI (+5.53 percent), EDC (+4.78 percent), Belle (+3.98 percent), AC (+3.89 percent), AEV (+3.78 percent) and AP (+3.24 percent).  BPI, SMIC and RLC were all up by over 2 percent.

The day’s most actively traded companies were PLDT (+1.47 percent), ALI and SMIC.

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