Stocks gain ahead of GDP data, peso ends sideways

By Kris Crismundo

August 9, 2023, 6:55 pm

<p><em>PNA graphics</em></p>

PNA graphics

MANILA – The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) rose on Wednesday a day before the release of the second quarter 2023 gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate, while the peso closed sideways.

The local bourse finished with 57.48 points increase to 6,530.45.

The stock market has been trading between 6,400 and 6,500 levels for the past seven trading days.

“Philippine stocks were bought ahead of the GDP release, as more earnings came out in line or above expectations, while others brushed off Moody's downgrade of several regional banks,” said Luis Limlingan, Regina Capital Development Corp. head of sales.

The country’s employment rate in June was also released Wednesday, which remained strong at 95.5 percent inching down slightly from 95.7 percent in May.

All shares also improved by 19.05 points to 3,480.16.

All counters closed in the positive territory, except for Mining and Oil, declining by 60.87 points to 10,106.29 points.

From being the biggest loser in the previous trading, the Holding Firms index was the day’s top gainer after rising 51.02 points. However, its increments still fell short from Tuesday’s losses of 58.12 points.

This was followed by Financials, up 22.41 points to 1,915.64; Services, 21.37 points to 1,590.70; Property, 7.54 points to 2,742.49; and Industrial, 2.69 points to 9,136.48.

Despite the local stock market ending in the green, majority of listed firms were decliners at 92 while 89 counters were advancers. Fifty-two firms retained their stocks.

Meanwhile, after depreciating for five consecutive trading days, the Philippine peso closed sideways to 56.20 to a US dollar on Wednesday from 56.25 in the previous trading.

It opened the day weak at 56.40 from last day’s start of 56.18 to the greenback.

The currency pair traded between 56.20 and 56.44 to a dollar, bringing the average level for the day at 56.23.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. chief economist Michael Ricafort cited that among the positive factors for the peso include the affirmation of Rating and Investment Information, Inc. on the country’s BBB+ rating, stronger investment approvals in the Philippine Economic Zone Authority, increase in dollar reserves, better exports data and narrower trade deficit.

Total volume of trade was lower at USD996.2 million from USD1.15 billion in the previous day. (PNA)