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PHL shares extend decline on inflation, weak peso

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PSE bells
PHILSTAR/KRIZ OHN ROSALES

SHARES fell anew as investors remained cautious against inflationary pressures and the weakening peso amid a lack of positive leads.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gave up 0.53% or 40.54 points to 7,602.36, marking its third straight day of decline.

The all-shares index likewise lost 0.16% or 7.44 points to 4,640.67 Tuesday, May 29.

“I think lukewarm sentiment continues to be the primary driver so far, based on value turnover being below-average recently. A lack of catalysts to look forward to is leaving key risks such as inflation and the weak peso to remain top-of-mind for most investors,” China Bank Securities Corp. Research Director Garie G. Ouano said via text.

Meanwhile, Regina Capital Development Corp. Managing Director Luis A. Limlingan pointed to the closure of financial markets in the United States as the reason for the PSEi’s lower finish.

“Philippine markets succumbed to profit taking with minimal guidance as the US equities and bonds markets were closed due to Memorial Day. However, as of the end of trading, the US was pointing to a negative close with the futures market down around 80 points at 3:30 p.m.,” Mr. Limlingan said in a mobile message.

Regional indices also closed lower on Tuesday, affected by higher oil prices in the world market.

Back home, most sectoral indices closed in negative territory, led by the holding firms counter, which plunged 1.16% or 87.44 points to 7,422.35. Mining and oil went down 0.53% or 52.57 points to 9,729.74, while industrials likewise shed 0.53% or 58.45 points to 10,890.54. Property also dropped 0.51% or 19.50 points to 3,795.77.

On the other hand, services climbed 0.40% or 6.03 points to 1,488.86, while financials rose 0.08% or 1.63 points to 1,899.06.

Some 1.15 billion issues valued at P6.11 billion switched hands, higher than Monday’s value turnover of P5.39 billion.

Decliners outpaced advancers, 101 to 89, while 54 names were unchanged. Foreign investors were net sellers for the 10th consecutive day, recording net outflows of P169.14 million on Tuesday, slower than the previous session’s P421.90 million.

Villar-led firms Starmalls, Inc. and Golden Bria Holdings, Inc. were among the top gainers for the day, jumping 50% to P14.10 each and 1.96% to P312 each, respectively.

Homegrown food giant Jollibee Foods Corp. (JFC) seemed undeterred by the Department of Labor and Employment’s release of its list of top 20 labor-only contracting companies on Monday. The list revealed JFC had the most number of contractual employees at 14,960 workers. Despite this, shares in JFC gained 0.93% to close at P283 each Tuesday, May 29.

The PSE also announced that financial markets will be closed on June 12, Tuesday, in observance of the Philippines’ Independence Day. — Arra B. Francia