Stocks rose for a second day to buck losses on Wall Street, as it followed the lead of other Asian markets and fears over the financial system eased.
The PSE index, the 30-company benchmark of the Philippine Stock Exchange, went up 27 points, or 0.42 percent, to close at 6,630.97, as five of the six subsectors advanced.
The broader all-share index also gained 9 points, or 0.28 percent, to settle at 3,529.66, on a value turnover of P13 billion. Losers outnumbered gainers, 100 to 76, while 55 issues were unchanged.
Four of the 10 most active stocks ended in the green, led by BDO Unibank Inc. which climbed 2.39 percent to P128.50 and Ayala Land Inc. which rose 1.58 percent to P28.90.
The peso was steady at 54.45 per US dollar.
Asian markets rose, led by massive gains for Chinese tech behemoth Alibaba after it announced it would split into six groups.
The Hangzhou-based firm said the changes were intended to “unlock shareholder value and foster market competitiveness”.
Alibaba is one of China’s most prominent tech firms, with operations spanning cloud computing, e-commerce, logistics, media and entertainment, and artificial intelligence.
By the close on Wednesday, its Hong Kong-listed shares were up by more than 12 percent. Its New York-listed shares were also up in the previous session.
“Investors could get hyped on the positive side in the short term,” said Willer Chen, senior research analyst at Forsyth Barr Asia.
“Alibaba’s shakeup plan may also lead investors to think of the potential for other tech firms like Tencent to follow suit.”
Tencent and Baidu also advanced.
The Hang Seng Index had gained more than two percent by the close, having troubled three percent earlier in the day.
The Nikkei 225 index had advanced 1.33 percent by the close in Tokyo, where Softbank—which owns a large stake in Alibaba—had risen by just over two percent.
Despite losses on Wall Street, the Tokyo market proved resilient as “excessive fears over the European financial system dwindled”, IwaiCosmo Securities said.
There were gains on most other Asian bourses, though Shanghai posted small losses.
Europe’s main stock markets rose at the start of trading Wednesday.
London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index climbed 0.3 percent to 7,506.31 points.
In the eurozone, Frankfurt’s DAX index won 0.7 percent to 15,242.54 points and the Paris CAC 40 gained 0.7 percent to 7,139.99.
Following a flattish day in European markets on Tuesday, US stock indices had finished modestly lower, shrugging off a better-than-expected consumer confidence reading.
The closely watched consumer confidence index increased in March to 104.2 from 103.4 last month, The Conference Board said in a statement.
“While consumers feel a bit more confident about what’s ahead, they are slightly less optimistic about the current landscape,” said Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director for economics at The Conference Board.
The gains followed last week’s rout over concerns that the turmoil in the banking sector—which sparked the UBS takeover of Credit Suisse—could hit other major institutions, such as German giant Deutsche Bank.
Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey, whose institution ramped up interest rates last week, sounded a note of caution over banking-sector upheaval.
“We are very vigilant. We are in a period of tension, tightness and alertness,” he told a parliamentary committee on Tuesday.
He added: “My very strong view about the UK banking system is that it is in a strong position, both capital and liquidity wise.” With AFP