GSIS, SSS bought P385M in stocks ahead of market shutdown | Inquirer Business

GSIS, SSS bought P385M in stocks ahead of market shutdown

MANILA, Philippines — A day before the stock market shut down due to the enhanced community quarantine covering the entire of Luzon, the country’s two state-run pension funds ramped up their purchases of shares of stocks amounting a combined P385 million.

Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III said the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) bought a total of P140 million at the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) last Monday.

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The Social Security System (SSS), meanwhile, had total buying worth a bigger P245 million that same day.

On Monday night, the PSE announced that it will stop trading beginning March 17, Tuesday, until further notice.

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PSE president Ramon Monzon explained that temporarily shutting down the stock market will “ensure the safety of employees and traders” amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prior to President Duterte’s announcement of the enhanced community quarantine last Monday, the PSE had said it was supposed to close trade at 1 p.m. instead of 3:30 p.m. during the earlier one-month quarantine covering only Metro Manila.

Last week, Dominguez ordered the two pension funds to take advantage of low stock prices and support the stock market by at least doubling their daily average purchase volumes compared to last year.

Dominguez had said that while the GSIS and the SSS both jacked up stock purchases, their exposures to PSE-traded equity securities were still lower than the mandatory limits under their respective charters.

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TAGS: enhanced community shutdown, GSIS, market shutdown, Philippine Stock Exchange, SSS
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