Market advances; Jollibee gains

The stock market rose Tuesday after a record close on Wall Street overnight, with investors filled with a renewed sense of hope over China-US talks.

The Philippine Stock Exchange Index added 44.66 points, or 0.6 percent, to 7,991.19  on a value turnover of P6.6 billion. Gainers beat losers, 97 to 81, withy 56 issues unchanged.

Nickel Asia Corp., the biggest nickel miner, rallied 5.2 percent to P4.08, while Jollibee Foods Corp., the largest fast-food chain advanced 3 percent to P229.80.

Alliance Global Group Inc. of tycoon Andrew Tan climbed 2.9 percent to P11.96, while AyalaLand Logistics Holdings Corp. rose 2.8 percent to P3.66.

The rest of Asian markets mostly rose Tuesday, taking up the baton after a record close on Wall Street, while the pound was winning support from easing Brexit fears.

Expectations for another Federal Reserve interest rate cut this week and a strong corporate reporting season were also providing a much-needed lift to confidence after a rollercoaster year on global trading floors.

Donald Trump reinforced optimism that the world’s economic superpowers are on track to resolve their tariffs war by saying the two sides were “ahead of schedule” on the first phase of a wider deal, and he hoped to sign it with Xi Jinping next month.

His comments came after officials from Washington and Beijing hailed progress in top-level talks on Friday.

“So far the soundings coming from both the US and China point to the likelihood of significant progress in trade negotiations,” said National Australia Bank analyst Rodrigo Catril.  

But he added that while they appeared to have reached agreement on key issues, it “is probably worth noting that so far neither party has officially said anything about the contentious issue surrounding China’s demand for a pullback on US tariffs”.

Investors, he said, seemed to be betting on that the improved relations will see the US suspend new levies due in December, or even roll back those imposed last month. However, he warned: “This is a big assumption as talks could easily fail again if both parties don’t find  a compromise.”

Tokyo rose 0.5 percent higher, Singapore jumped 0.4 percent and Sydney put on 0.1 percent.

Wellington, Taipei and Bangkok were also up, with Mumbai rallying more than one percent on hopes for earnings.

But Hong Kong lost 0.5 percent in the afternoon and Shanghai ended down 0.9 percent, while Seoul was flat.

“It looks as if we’ve pretty much hit the bottom in some sectors and we should actually be near an inflection point,” Margie Patel at Wells Fargo Asset Management told Bloomberg TV.

“We’ve had the Fed cutting rates pretty much all of this year. It takes a while for that to feed into the economy. I think the worst is pretty much behind us.”

While the earnings season is in full swing, investors are also keeping tabs on the Fed’s next policy meeting this week, which could see it cut borrowing costs once again.

But OANDA senior market analyst Jeffrey Halley said: “Part of the overnight rally on Wall Street was also driven by the almost 100 percent expectation, that the (Fed policy board) will cut rates. With AFP

Topics: Stock Market , Philippine Stock Exchange Index , Philippine Stock Exchange , PSE , PSEi , Jollibee
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