Stocks rise, peso improves

MANILA – Both the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) and the peso ended higher Thursday as investors took note of the weak United States (US) manufacturing and services sectors.

PSEi improved for the second day in a row after rising by 0.19 percent, or 15.25 points, to 7,930.55 points.

BPI Research said foreign buying buoyed local stocks after US retail sales fell for the first time in seven months last September after dropping by 0.3 percent.

“The latest turnout has raised expectations that there could be one or more rate cuts from the Federal Reserve in the coming months,” it said.

To date, the Fed has slashed its key rates by 50 basis points to between 1.75 percent and two percent as US monetary officials consider growth outlook for the US economy to be “favorable”.

Some economists forecast another cut in the Fed rates before the year ends as domestic output is expected to remain weak due in part to the impact of the trade tension between the US and China.

Concerns on growth of the US economy made some investors take to local stocks, resulting in a positive close of most of the counters.

All Shares rose 0.15 percent, or 7.24 points, to 4,770.93 points.

Financials, Industrial, Property, and Services increased by 0.68 percent, 0.34 percent, 0.25 percent, and 0.09 percent, respectively.

On the other hand, Mining and Oil fell by 1.42 percent and Holding Firms by 0.17 percent.

Volume reached 587.99 million shares amounting to P5.71 billion.

Gainers led losers 93 to 79, while 57 shares were unchanged.

The peso ended the day at 51.42 to the US dollar from the previous day’s close of 51.595.

It opened the day at 51.5, way better than the 51.66 on Wednesday, trading between 51.53 and 51.42, and resulting in an average of 51.486.

 Volume reached $1.29 billion, higher than the $1.16 billion in the previous day.

 The currency pair is seen to trade between 51.35 and 51.55 on Friday. (PNA)


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