Market falls; Geri, IMI advance

Stocks fell Monday to end a three-day advance, as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte’s state-of-the-nation address later this month and after the peso fell to a new 10-year low.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index, the 30-company benchmark, shed 51 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 7,837.47 Monday, as five of the six major sectors declined.

The heavier index, representing all shares, also tumbled 22 points, or 0.5 percent, to settle at 4,712.90, on a value turnover of P7.1 billion.  Losers outnumbered gainers, 104 to 91, while 51issues were unchanged.

Eight of the 20 most active stocks ended in the green, led by Global-Estate Resorts Inc. which jumped 13.3 percent to P1.79 and Integrated Micro-Electronics Inc. which climbed 5.9 percent to P15.78.  Retailer SSI Group Inc. gained 5.3 percent to P4.94.

The peso closed at 50.695 against the US dollar Monday, its lowest level in more than 10 years, as investors continued to prefer the greenback.  The greenback pushed on, having been boosted by last week’s jobs numbers, which fueled expectations the Federal Reserve will lift interest rates at least once more before year’s end.

Meanwhile, Asian equities rose, rebounding from their biggest weekly drop in four months, following stronger than expected US hiring data that boosted investor confidence in a global economic recovery. A gauge of technology shares led the advance.

Asian markets mostly rose Monday and the dollar built on gains, following a rally on Wall Street that came on the back of forecast-busting jobs data out of the United States.

All three main indexes in New York surged Friday after the Labor Department said the world’s top economy created almost 50,000 more jobs than expected in June, reinforcing the view that it is back on track.

While there was disappointment at another weak reading on wage growth, analysts said the news was greeted with open arms by dealers after a tough week on trading floors caused by geopolitical tensions following North Korea’s latest missile test.

“The non-farm payroll figures exceeded expectations and boosted risk appetite among investors,” said Milan Cutkovic, market analyst at AxiTrader.

Asian investors tracked their US counterparts. Tokyo ended 0.8 percent higher, while Sydney jumped 0.4 percent.

Hong Kong also rose 0.8 percent in the afternoon with Wanda Hotel Development soaring around 75 percent after its parent said it would sell dozens of hotels and other projects to developer Sunac China Holdings in a US$9.3 billion deal to reduce debt.

Also in Hong Kong state-run Cosco Shipping jumped five percent on news it would pay US$6.3 billion for Orient Overseas International Ltd, creating a global shipping titan. Orient soared almost 20 percent.

Singapore added 0.5 percent and Seoul gained 0.1 percent. But Shanghai eased 0.2 percent with traders unimpressed by data showing Chinese inflation stabilised in June after slowing for three months.

There were also losses in Taipei and Wellington. With Bloomberg, AFP

Topics: stock market , Philippine Stock Exchange , Philippine Stock Exchange index , PSE , PSEi , Global-Estate Resorts Inc. , Integrated Micro-Electronics Inc.
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