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Volatile trading expected this week

The stock market is expected to move in volatile trading this week due to mounting fears about the outbreak of coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19), which could hurt global economic growth.

On the domestic front, analysts said the MSCI rebalancing and regulatory concerns would also continue to weigh down on share prices.

“The latest weighting of the PSEi takes effect Monday (Feb. 17) and many funds reposition along with this,” said Luis Limlingan, managing director at Regina Capital Development Corp.

Given the current developments, Philstocks Financials Inc. urged investors to trade cautiously.

“Trade cautiously as investors weigh optimistic earnings prospects against mounting epidemic cases. Take positions from the banks amid good earnings anticipated,” Philstocks said.

Global debt watcher Moody’s Investors Service said the spread of the COVID-19 would weaken the Philippines’ economic growth and employment outlook this year.

The Philippine Stock Exchange Index last week dropped three percent to close at 7,282, while the broader All Shares Index declined 2.3 percent to 4,319.11.

All major counters also ended in red led by industrial which fell 4.85 percent, mining and oil which shed 4.4 percent, and services which lost 4.2 percent.

Banks fell 2.9 percent while property and holding firms dipped 2.7 percent and 1.32 percent, respectively.

Foreign investors were net buyers for the week by P815 million, while the average daily value traded stood at P6.1 billion from the previous week’s average of P7.38 billion.

Weekly top price gainers were mostly second- and third-liners led by Holcim Philippines Inc., which rose 13.8 percent to P11.54, Vista Land & Lifescapes Inc., which climbed 11.5 percent to P7.29 and MacroAsia Corp., which advanced 4.7 percent to P11 apiece.

Weekly top price losers were ISM Communications Corp., which sank 22 percent to P1.90, Manila Electric Co., which fell 9.3 percent to P262, and International Container Terminal Services Inc., which dropped 7 percent to P119.

Wall Street, meanwhile, posted mixed results on Friday, ending an otherwise positive week as markets in Europe and Asia also muddled to a close.

Of concern to investors was the new coronavirus outbreak that has spread globally, infecting 64,000 amid fears of widespread economic disruptions in the world’s second-largest economy, China, and beyond.  

Mixed government data did little to move Wall Street traders who held fire ahead of a three-day weekend, with the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average closing down slightly but the tech-rich Nasdaq and the broad-based S&P 500 ending up.

Meanwhile, official data showing Europe’s largest economy, Germany, had zero growth in the last quarter of 2019 subdued European markets. 

Asian indices earlier closed mixed as traders struggled to work out if China’s outbreak was worse than being reported by authorities. 

A dramatic rise in the number of deaths and new cases of the virus on Thursday fueled global suspicions that Beijing might be concealing the illness’ real scope.

Wall Street finished that day in the red—a reversal from Wednesday when its main indices closed at record highs.  With AFP

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