THE MAIN INDEX sustained its climb on Thursday as investors started gaining optimism amid improving economic data and a possible fiscal stimulus in the United States.
The bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) rose 80.64 points or 1.37% to close at 5,944.87, while the broader all shares index picked up 33.43 points or 0.94% to end at 3,562.28.
“Local shares made huge gains towards closing driven by strong economic data within and outside the region,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a mobile message.
September Philippine manufacturing data released on Thursday showed a seven-month high factory output due to the relaxation of local quarantine restrictions. The country’s purchasing managers’ index climbed to 50.2 in September from 47.3 in August, breaching for the first time since February the 50-neutral mark that separates expansion from contraction.
“This is still lower than its year-ago level of 51.8, but marks the first period of expansion in six months—the highest reading since Feb 2020… All things considered, this means that the country’s manufacturing activity only started to pick up in September following the mid-March lockdowns,” Mr. Limlingan said.
Another catalyst was the proposed coronavirus fiscal stimulus in the US, which will address the economic slowdown caused by the pandemic.
“Local market sustained its upward momentum in line with regional markets on signs of potential progress toward a fresh US fiscal stimulus,” Diversified Securities, Inc. Equity Trader Aniceto K. Pangan said in a text message.
The US administration is eyeing an above $1.5-trillion fiscal stimulus to support industries affected by the coronavirus pandemic, from which $20 billion will be allotted to the hard-hit airline industry.
US stocks ended Wednesday’s session with gains: the Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indices all grew 1.20%, 0.83% and 0.74%, respectively.
Back home, nearly all sectoral indices also recorded improvements at the close of Thursday’s trading. Financials increased 21.34 points or 1.86% to 1,163.14; services added 21.71 points or 1.49% to 1,475.59; holding firms climbed 81.10 points or 1.33% to 6,139.75; property advanced 32.22 points or 1.17% to 2,772.51; and industrials edged up 4.6 points or 0.05% to 7,905.81. Mining and oil was the sole declining index, falling 56.36 points or 0.95% to 5,850.13 at the end of the session.
Some 1.96 billion issues valued at P5.43 billion switched hands on Thursday, higher than the previous day’s 1.07 billion issues worth P5.48 billion.
Decliners outnumbered advancers, 108 against 81. Some 53 names ended unchanged.
Foreign investors remained net sellers, with net outflows declining to P545.8 million from P585.58 million in the previous session. — Denise A. Valdez