MIXED. Wait-and-see stance for the latest non-farm payrolls in the United States resulted in the flat close of the Philippines' main stocks gauge on Friday (Oct. 7, 2022). However, the peso weakened against the US dollar. (PNA graphics)

MANILA – The main equities index finished the week almost flat ahead of the release of latest jobs reports in the United States but the peso weakened against the US dollar.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) ended this week’s trading 0.04 percent, or 2.08 points, lower to 5,932.19 points.

All Shares rose by 0.03 percent, or 0.8 points, to 3,200.59 points.

Half of the sectoral gauges finished in the negative territory namely Mining and Oil, 0.70 percent; Property, 0.66 percent; and Financials, 0.44 percent.

On the other hand, Industrial, Services, and Holding Firms inched up by 0.53 percent, 0.23 percent, and 0.15 percent, respectively.

Volume reached 476.12 million shares amounting to PHP4.15 billion.

Decliners led advancers at 96 to 84, while 44 shares were unchanged.

“Philippine shares closed flat as investors looked ahead to September’s job report for further clues into the Fed’s (Federal Reserve) monetary action path,” said Luis Limlingan, Regina Capital Development Corporation (RCDC) head of sales.

Latest job reports in the US are scheduled to be released later in the day.

Limlingan said a Dow Jones survey among economists showed expectations for a jump of 275,000 in non-farm payrolls.

Oil futures rose anew after OPEC+ announced production cuts.

Futures of Brent crude oil inched up by 1.1 percent to USD94.42 percent and West Texas Intermediate (WTI) by 0.8 percent to USD88.45 per barrel.

Meanwhile, the peso weakened to a US dollar and finished the week at 58.92 from 58.653 a day ago.

It opened the day sideways at 58.85 and traded between 58.93 and 58.825. The average for the day stood at 58.878.

Volume declined to USD483.34 million from day-ago’s USD756.05 million.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) chief economist Michael Ricafort traced the local unit’s depreciation to the regained strength of the US dollar “after the latest hawkish signals from Fed officials ahead of the latest US jobs/employment/labor data.”

Ricafort said the jobs reports figure “could partly determine pace of future Fed rate hikes.”

He said jump in oil futures to its three-week hike also contributed to the peso’s weakness.

These factors are, however, countered by the government’s latest global bond sale, amounting to USD2 billion, which can boost the country’s foreign reserves and balance of payments (BOP) position, he said.

Ricafort eyes the peso to trade between 58.75-58.95 to a US dollar on Monday. (PNA)