THE BENCHMARK Philippine Stock Exchange (PSEi) index rallied for the fifth consecutive day on Friday as investors continued buying shares.
The main index climbed by 40.92 points or 0.61% to finish at 6,685.69 on Friday. The broader shares index likewise rose by 25.41 points or 0.64% to close at 3,944.72.
“Investors in the Philippine market continued the buying momentum on hopes the winner of the US presidential election would soon be determined, with shares of major index names leading the gains,” Regina Capital Development Corp’s Managing Director Luis A. Limlingan said in a Viber message.
“In the latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting, Jerome Powell and his colleagues left rates near zero and made no change to asset purchases, as expected,” Mr. Limlingan added.
The US Federal Reserve kept its loose monetary policy intact on Thursday and pledged again to do whatever it can in the coming months to sustain a US economic recovery losing speed amid a spreading coronavirus pandemic and facing uncertainty over a still-undecided presidential election, Reuters reported.
The economy is still growing but “I would not say that anybody is feeling comfortable about this,” Fed Chair Jerome Powell said in a news conference after the Fed’s latest two-day policy meeting. “We’ve gotten through the first five, six months of the expansion better than expected … But we have to be humble where we are relative to this disease. It has not gone away.”
The short-term outlook is also clouded by doubts about where fiscal policy may be headed in coming weeks, or how smooth a possible transition would be between an incoming Democratic administration led by Joe Biden and a lame-duck administration led by Republican President Donald Trump that will still hold sway over upcoming decisions on funding the government and extending the US central bank’s emergency programs.
Results from Tuesday’s US election were still being tabulated in a few key states, though Mr. Biden was near the minimum 270 votes in the state-by-state Electoral College needed to win the White House.
Back home, almost all sectoral indices ended Friday’s session with gains. Services grew by 32.68 points or 2.20% to 1,512.14; mining and oil rose 135.53 points or 1.74% to 7,904.01; holding firms climbed by 66.08 points or 0.94% to 7,042.73; property increased by 10.81 points or 0.33% to 3,195.28; and industrials inched up by 26.42 points or 0.29% to 8,860.33.
Meanwhile, financials lost 13.02 points or 1% to end at 1,280.17.
Value turnover stood at P10.08 billion with 4.08 billion issues switching hands, down from the previous session’s P10.18 billion with 5 billion issues.
Advancers led versus decliners, 109 against 92, while 57 names closed unchanged.
Net foreign buying continued and stood at P453.57 million on Friday, lower than the previous session’s net inflow of P623.88 million. — Angelica Y. Yang with Reuters