Stocks snap 3-day rally

Iris Gonzales - The Philippine Star
Stocks snap 3-day rally
The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) finished at 7,369.27, down 49.83 points or 0.67 percent.
STAR / file

MANILA, Philippines — Stocks halted a three-day rally to end lower yesterday, as news-starved investors turned more cautious after the US central bank hinted at raising rates sooner than expected.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) finished at 7,369.27, down 49.83 points or 0.67 percent.

Likewise, the broader All Shares index slipped 22.27 points or 0.57 percent to end at 3,913.27.

“The local market takes a breather as investor await new catalysts to drive the index above the previous high of 7,441.67,” AB Capital Securities said.

Trading was down for the entire session as profit-taking took place following the market’s upsurge. Total value turnover reached P7.997 billion.

Market breadth was likewise negative, with 126 losers outpacing 62 gainers, while 51 stocks remained unchanged.

Foreigners also turned net sellers with P542.81 million, contributing to the decline.

Asian stock markets were also broadly lower yesterday after US Federal Reserve officials indicated they were ready to raise interest rates sooner than expected if needed to cool inflation.

Fed officials at their October policy meeting said they “would not hesitate” to respond to inflation, according to notes released Wednesday. They foresaw the possibility of raising rates “sooner than participants currently anticipated.”

That fueled investor fears the Fed and other central banks might feel pressure to withdraw economic stimulus that has been boosting stock prices. Fed officials earlier indicated they might raise rates late next year.

Higher prices combined with stronger US hiring suggest the attitude at the next Fed meeting might be “unabashedly more hawkish,” said Tan Boon Heng of Mizuho Bank in a report.

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