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Stocks fall on profit-taking

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The local stocks index on Thursday retreated below 5,800 as investors pocketed gains after a five-day runup.

After posting its 38th record finish on Wednesday, the main-share Philippine Stock Exchange index pulled back by 37.94 points, or 0.65 percent, to close at 5,794.89.

Holding firms posted the steepest decline. Only the financial counter narrowly avoided ending in the red.

Value turnover was thin at P4.59 billion as many investors were on an extended holiday break.

Apart from profit-taking pressures, risk appetite was also tempered by concerns that the strong peso was hurting the business process outsourcing industry, a key driver of the domestic economy.

There were 67 advancers against 85 decliners, while 46 stocks were unchanged.

Investors sold down shares of AC, DMCI, ALI, Semirara, FGEN, SMDC, URC, Metrobank and PLDT.

Elsewhere in the region, stock markets closed mostly higher despite jitters over the so-called “fiscal cliff” impasse of the United States, which needs to be resolved before the year ends.

“Fiscal cliff” refers to a series of mandated tax increases and spending cuts that may push the US economy into another recession unless a new budget deal is struck by the end of the year.


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