Shares dip further as BSP mulls over action vs inflation
Philippine shares were mostly lower on Wednesday after the World Bank cut the country’s 2022 growth outlook while investors weighed the possibility of a “preemptive” monetary tightening action from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) after inflation jumped to 4 percent last month.
The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index fell 0.65 percent, or 46.81 points, to 7,109.26 while the broader all-shares index shed 0.45 percent, or 16.94 points, to 3,780.49.
The World Bank downgraded the country’s forecast growth from 5.8 percent to 5.7 percent this year given the country’s exposure to high commodity prices triggered by the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
Meanwhile, BSP Governor Benjamin Diokno was quoted in news reports saying they were prepared to take “preemptive action” should inflation significantly veer off target.
Analysts still expect the BSP to raise interest rates by the second half of 2022.
Holding firms and services were the biggest losers among the PSE subsectors, dropping 1.23 percent and 0.52 percent, respectively.
Trading volume crept higher with 11.53 billion shares valued at P4.98 billion changing hands, while foreigners were net sellers to the tune of P464.96 million. Overall, there were 102 losers against 79 gainers while 51 companies closed unchanged.
Ayala Land Inc. was the most actively traded on Wednesday as it sank 0.14 percent to P34.80 per share.
It was followed by Ayala Corp., down 1.84 percent to P800; Converge ICT Solutions Inc., down 1.02 percent to P29; SM Investments Corp., down 0.79 percent to P882; and Bank of the Philippine Islands, down 1.11 percent to P98.10 per share.
Globe Telecom rose 0.50 percent to P2,432; Semirara Mining Corp., up 2.94 percent to P31.50; PLDT Inc., up 1.21 percent to P1,840; BDO Unibank Inc., flat at P133.40; and International Container Terminal Services Inc., down 1.77 percent to P222 per share.
—Miguel R. Camus
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