October 21, 2017 | MANILA, PHILIPPINES

PSE index extends gains to hit six-month high

THE MAIN INDEX breached the 7,600 mark on Monday for the first time in six months, as the market continued its upward rally with developments abroad calming down.


The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) rose 0.45% or 34.16 points to close at 7,617.91 on Monday, its best finish since ending at 7,609.31 last Oct. 24, 2016.

The all-shares index likewise climbed by 0.39% or 17.45 points up to start the week at 4,541.61.

“The market extended gains from last week. This was boosted by positive sentiments from Wall Street,” RCBC Securities analyst Jeremy G. Yumul said in a telephone interview.

Wall Street’s three major indexes edged lower on Friday in a choppy session as investors grappled with a weaker-than-expected job report, the US airstrike in Syria and a top Federal Reserve official’s comments on trimming the US central bank’s balance sheet.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 6.85 points or 0.03% at 20,656.10, the S&P 500 lost 1.95 points or 0.08% to 2,355.54 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.14 points or 0.02% to 5,877.81.

Traders were cautious last week as US President Donald J. Trump ordered his military to launch 59 missiles in Syria, following the chemical gas leak that reportedly killed around 70 and left hundreds more injured.

“Philippine market traded with an upward bias while US stocks ended a wild roller coaster of events last Friday before closing more or less unchanged as investors juggled implications of the US air strike against Syria, a mixed/disappointing -- albeit weather-impacted -- March jobs report and commentary on the Fed’s balance sheet trimming strategy,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Managing Director Luis A. Limlingan said.

All sectoral counters posted gains, with property leading with a 1.12% or 37.24-point increase to 3,347.64, followed by services which rose 1.06% or 17.01 points to 1,608.41. The remaining counters showed increases of less than 1%: industrial went up by 0.64% or 71.55 points to 11,219.66; mining and oil rose 0.34% or 41.62 points to 12,139.59; financials added 0.01% or 0.32 point to 1,899.22; and holding firms ticked up by 0.01% or 0.97 point to 7,657.49.

Advancers beat decliners, 101 to 88, as 50 closed unchanged.


A total of 1.48 billion issues changed hands valued at P6.07 billion, down from Friday’s turnover of P9.74 billion. Net foreign buying settled at P466.66 million, down from the previous session’s net purchases worth P1.55 billion.

“Given the day’s volume, in general, today’s gains are not as pronounced as compared to last week,” RCBC’s Mr. Yumul said on Monday.

The bellwether PSEi is expected to continue its upward trend within the range of 7,500 to 7,667, the analyst said, “[a]ssuming no major developments happen.”

“There might be a shock if there are developments given the events between US and Syria,” Mr. Yumul added. -- Arra B. Francia with Reuters