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Stock Commentary

Quick Take: Phoenix Petroleum's "reasonable payment plan" and 2 more market updates

Merkado Barkada
Quick Take: Phoenix Petroleum's "reasonable payment plan" and 2 more market updates

Phoenix Petroleum [PNX 8.5] [link] disclosed that it worked out a “reasonable payment plan” with Absolut Distillers, a subsidiary of LT Group [LTG 9.3 1.1%], for P158 million in unpaid debts owed by Dennis Uy’s PNX to Lucio Tan’s LTG. The trial court had placed a writ of preliminary attachment against PNX, but PNX now says that the trial court has lifted the garnishment order after PNX and LTG were able to settle the matter privately.

MB Quick Take: As I mentioned in my original write-up, corporate disagreements rarely evolve to the point where a court is placing writs of attachment on a delinquent company’s bank accounts. That’s a serious situation, and no competent party would ever allow a legal dispute to go there as some form of gamesmanship. I don’t know what’s going on inside PNX or the other group companies, but things must be chaotic for something to have required this to come to an agreement. No terms were disclosed.
 

PLDT [TEL 1665.0 4.1%] [link] gave Dito Telecommunity [DITO 3.0 2.8%] “more time” to settle the P430 million outstanding balance that TEL says DITO owes in relation to TEL’s contracted build-out of DITO’s network. DITO failed to satisfy the debt by TEL’s previous November 4 deadline. TEL said that it is being “as patient as it can”. For its part, DITO claims that it doesn’t owe the money because it never committed a material breach to the agreement, and in the alternative, that if it did commit a breach to the agreement, it was forced to sign the agreement as a precondition of interconnection with SMART’s subscribers. TEL clarified that the interconnection deal is with SMART, and that SMART is not a party to the contract that DITO allegedly breached.

MB Quick Take: Other Dennis Uy companies are just getting around to settling their debt obligations (PNX with LTG Group), so maybe now the group can spend some time on trying to figure this one out. TEL hoping for a Christmas Miracle?
 

Benjamin Diokno (Department of Finance [DoF]) [link] was confirmed by the Commission on Appointments as the Secretary of the DoF. The confirmation comes after some whispers that President Marcos could be weighing the possibility of replacing Mr. Diokno with someone with more inflation-fighting experience, like politico-economist Joey Salceda.

MB Quick Take: The confirmation doesn’t change the at-will nature of Mr. Diokno’s position. He’s a Marcos appointee, and can be removed by Marcos at any time. It’s not a bad sign for Mr. Diokno’s job security, but my feeling is that President Marcos will pocket this card and play it at some later time when a distraction is useful or when it might be advantageous to identify a fall-guy for the problems we may all face if this recent news was not a light at the end of this inflation tunnel, but was in fact a devious head-fake that brought more price increases and interest rate hikes.

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Merkado Barkada is a free daily newsletter on the PSE, investing and business in the Philippines. You can subscribe to the newsletter or follow on Twitter to receive the full daily updates.
Merkado Barkada's opinions are provided for informational purposes only, and should not be considered a recommendation to buy or sell any particular stock. These daily articles are not updated with new information, so each investor must do his or her own due diligence before trading, as the facts and figures in each particular article may have changed.

DITO TELECOMMUNITY CORP.

LT GROUP INC.

PHILIPPINE ECONOMY

PHILIPPINE STOCK EXCHANGE

PHOENIX PETROLEUM PHILIPPINES INC.

PLDT INC.

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