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Business

Stock market still climbing, posts 13th record close

Neil Jerome C. Morales - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The main index closed past the 6,300 for the first time en route to recording its 13th record high for the year as investors picked stocks poised to grow with the economy.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) advanced 1.22 percent or 75.87 points to close at a new all-time high at 6,318.61, eclipsing the 6,271.23 closing on January 30. It also recorded a new intraday high at 6,342.72.

The broader all shares index rose one percent or 39.53 points to 3,977.07.

“The rise stemmed from local traders repositioning in sectors that are seen to benefit from the higher economic growth outlook this year and also higher government and corporate spending,” Freya Natividad, investment analyst at brokerage firm 2Trade-Asia.com, said in a phone interview.

Fourth quarter gross domestic product grew 6.8 percent, bringing full-year 2012 uptick at 6.6 percent, which is above the five to six-percent forecast of the government. The National Economic and Development Authority’s conservative forecast for this year is six to seven percent.

“I think more investors are now pricing in the benefits from the election season, which leads to higher consumer spending,” Natividad said.

Investors focused on local news, allowing the main index to buck the trend overseas, Natividad said.

On Thursday, Wall Street dropped anew as investors digested reports in corporate earnings with the US economy still fragile.

Blue-chip Dow Jones industrial average slipped 0.4 percent or 50 points to 13,860.58 while the broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index shed 0.26 percent or 3.85 points to 1,498.11.

In the local bourse, all subindices, save for holding firms that lost 0.34 percent or 19.09 points to 5,536.69, were in the green. The winners were led by property firms that rallied 3.32 percent or 83.52 points to 2,597.64.

Turnover eased to P11.625 billion from P12.44 billion on Thursday as advancers outpaced decliners, 98 to 66, while prices of 51 stocks did not change.

Natividad said that for next week, the main index will likely retest the 6,330 resistance level, factoring in the election spending and the upgrade of the Philippines’ sovereign credit rating to investment grade.

Meanwhile, global financial service firm JP Morgan Chase & Co. expressed optimism in the local stock market as it expects PSEi to end the year at around the 7,000 level.

“[Local stocks] continue to offer good value relative to the growth they are offering,” said Adrian Mowat, managing director and chief Asian and emerging markets equity strategist of JP Morgan.

 

vuukle comment

ADRIAN MOWAT

DOW JONES

FREYA NATIVIDAD

MORGAN CHASE

NATIONAL ECONOMIC AND DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY

NATIVIDAD

ON THURSDAY

PHILIPPINE STOCK EXCHANGE

WALL STREET

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