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PHL shares climb as investors pick up bargains

PHILIPPINE shares climbed on Monday, as investors went bargain hunting after six days of the market closing in the red.

The 30-member Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gained 58.7 points or 0.93% to close at 6,317.41 on Monday, while the broader all shares index improved by 29.28 points or 0.75% to end at 3,906.71.

“Bargain hunters likely drove buying appetite today even as trading volumes continued to be light,” China Bank Securities Corp. Research Head Rastine Mackie D. Mercado said in an e-mail.

“The market recovered some ground and ended higher on lighter selling pressure. Gains were mainly from holding firms that took heavy losses last week… trading volumes remain low, although it was slightly higher today because of heavy trading in several second liners,” AAA Southeast Equities, Inc. Research Head Christopher John J. Mangun said in a separate e-mail on Monday.

AB Capital Securities, Inc. Junior Equity Analyst Lance U. Soledad said in a Viber message that shares improved due to bargain hunting and noted that investors “remained on the sidelines.”

All sectoral indices closed in the green on Monday. Mining and oil climbed by 188.84 points or 1.96% to 9,777.20; holding firms increased by 94.33 points or 1.51% to 6,320.86; services went up by 15.79 points or 1.09% to 1,460.19; financials gained 13.72 points or 0.98% to finish at 1,404.07; industrials improved by 39.91 points or 0.46% to 8,668.56; and property inched up by 3.81 points or 0.12% to close at 3,048.07.

Value turnover inched down to P4.57 billion on Monday with 2.05 billion shares switching hands, from the P4.66 billion seen on Friday with 2.10 billion shares traded.

Advancers outnumbered decliners, 116 against 97, while 46 names closed unchanged.

Net foreign selling declined to P329.46 million on Monday from the P637.59 million in net outflows recorded on Friday.

“Despite the rebound, the sentiment remains the same. Investors are still very cautious, which we expect will continue until we see more progress on the inoculation,” AAA Southeast Equities’ Mr. Mangun said.

The Health department reported 6,846 new coronavirus cases on Monday, which brought the country’s tally to 1.109 million. Active cases stood at 59,897.

More than two million doses of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine arrived in the Philippines on Saturday from the international COVAX facility. Some 1.5 doses of Sinovac also arrived on Friday.

Meanwhile, around 193,000 doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine are also expected to arrive within the month.

China Bank’s Mr. Mercado said he expects the PSEi to rally in the coming days.

“However, volatility is likely to edge higher this week especially as [first-quarter] GDP (gross domestic product) figures are released tomorrow, new quarantine measures are announced within the week, and corporates continue to report [first-quarter] earnings,” he added. — K.C.G. Valmonte

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