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Stock prices fall on infection spike, lack of leads

PHILIPPINE shares went down on Monday as investors remained on the sidelines on the lack of positive catalysts amid the continued surge in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in the country.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) declined by 35.05 points or 0.54%  to close at 6,459.76 on Monday, while the all shares index went down by 12.49 points or 0.31% to 3,969.02.

Philstocks Financial, Inc. Senior Research Analyst Japhet Louis O. Tantiangco attributed the PSEi’s decline to a “lack of catalysts amid lingering pandemic worries.”

“The surge in our country’s COVID-19 cases remains unabated, in turn weighing on our economic outlook, while factors that could spur investor optimism are yet to be seen,” Mr. Tantiangco said in a Viber message.

COL Financial Group, Inc. Chief Technical Analyst Juanis G. Barredo said the market continues “to see pressure from selling action.”

“COVID-19 threats continue to plague market sentiment and only allow for some sporadic and isolated rallies,” Mr. Barredo said in a separate Viber message. “The PSEi was down along with India and Indonesia, but did not sync with the advances/recoveries seen in most other Asian markets.”

The Health department reported 9,628 new cases on Monday, which brought the tally to 945,745. Active cases were at 141,375.

Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan meanwhile said investors opted to put their money in the US market instead.

“Investors continued to pile up stock in the US following the country’s strong earnings from the blue chips and sound economic data, supporting economic recovery,” Mr. Limlingan said in a Viber message.

Majority of the PSE’s sectoral indices closed in the red on Monday, except for mining and oil, which gained 91.51 points or 1.02% to finish at 9,062.76; and financials, which improved by 0.21 point or 0.01% to 1,393.53.

Meanwhile, holding firms fell by 39.60 points or 0.59% to 6,577.28; industrials lost 44.83 points or 0.52% to end at 8,562.65; property went down by 16.77 points or 0.52% to 3,182.54; and services inched down by 6.20 points or 0.43% to close at 1,435.91.

Value turnover went down to P4.89 billion with 6.26 billion shares switching hands on Monday, from the P5.67 billion seen on Friday with 6.77 billion issues traded.

Philstocks Financial’s Mr. Tantiangco said trading “remained anemic” because investors remained on the sidelines due to “elevated risks.”

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 119 against 81, while 47 names closed unchanged.

Net foreign selling jumped to P704.45 million on Monday from the P522.31 million seen on Friday.

“The Philippine index remains in a corrective trend seeing next support between 6,400 and 6,200 while resistance stands between 6,600 to 6,700,” COL Financial’s Mr. Barredo said. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte

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