Philippine stocks steady in thin trade
Philippine Daily Inquirer
The local stock index was hardly changed on Wednesday, led by selective buying of index stocks like Universal Robina, Alliance Global and Jollibee.
The main-share Philippine Stock Exchange index added 0.72 point, or 0.01 percent, to finish at 5,266.66 in thin trade ahead of a much-anticipated MSCI Index review. Across the region, stock markets were mostly lower.
For the next index review, the market is anticipating an increase in the weight on URC and a decrease in weight on Meralco to factor the changes in these companies’ public floats. URC (+2.55 percent) is seen gaining index weight as the place-out of treasury stocks in June improved its liquidity. On the other hand, the public float of Meralco (-0.69 percent) had significantly seen a decline, fund managers said.
Sentiment at the local market was mixed, with the financial and industrial counters keeping the main index afloat while the holding firms, services, mining/oil and property counters ended slightly lower.
Value turnover was thin at P4 billion as the so-called Chinese “ghost month,” which starts August 17, draws near. Despite the overall index gain, there were only 66 advancers, which were outnumbered by 89 decliners.
Other index stocks that contributed to the day’s meager index rise were AGI (+1.28 percent) and JFC (+1.42 percent). JFC reported better first-semester profits. Metrobank, PLDT and AEV also contributed to the PSEi’s gains.
On the other hand, Ayala fell 1.85 percent while Globe and Megaworld also lost 1.71 percent each. BDO and SM Prime also ended lower. Non-index stocks SGI (-2.89 percent) and ABSP (-2.77 percent) also weakened.—Doris C. Dumlao
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