Stock market to remain volatile

Trading at the Philippine Stock Exchange is expected to remain volatile this week as the government starts implementing a community lockdown in Metro Manila to control the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

The lockdown, which started Sunday midnight and would last until April 14, will limit travel in and out of Metro Manila.

Analysts said while the bloodbath in the stock market last week made many of Philippine stocks very attractive to bargain hunters, investors were still expected to remain on the sidelines as the virus continued to spread in many parts of the country.

This means the market could experience more bleeding in the coming trading sessions.

Volumes are also expected to remain thin even as indicators show that the market is already deeply oversold.

Philstocks Financial Inc said the COVID-19 fears also continued to hammer other countries.

While the coronavirus outbreak has tapered in China, it is spreading in other countries. Italy reported more than 2,600 new cases, or a total of 15,113. In the US, confirmed cases rose to 1,642, with at least 21 states declaring states of emergency.

The Philippine Stock Exchange Index last week plummeted 14.4 percent to 5,793.94, while the broader All Shares Index plunged 13.5 percent to 3,493.64.

All indices were in red with the mining and oil index registering the biggest decline at 24.7 percent, followed by property which slumped 18.98 percent and holding firms which shrank 14.2 percent.

The industrial index declined 12.8 percent, while financials and services dropped  11.3 percent and 10.7 percent, respectively.

Foreign investors were net sellers for the week by P3.7 billion while the average daily value traded stood at P7.79 billion.

The Phisix year-to-date is already down 25 percent.

Only 13 stocks posted week-on-week gains last week, including Philippine Racing Club Inc., which rose 12.2 percent to P8.96; Emperador Inc., which rose 11.3 percent to P9.01; and First Gen Corp., which climbed 8.4 percent to P15.90.

Weekly top price losers included Cebu Air Inc., which tumbled 32.3 percent to P48; Eagle Cement which fell 30.4 percent to P7.10; and Robinsons Land Corp., which dipped declined 26 percent to P17.20.

Wall Street stocks, meanwhile, concluded a bruising week on a positive note Friday, rallying as President Donald Trump declared the coronavirus a national emergency and set the stage for more testing in the United States.

A late-afternoon surge enabled the Dow to finish almost 2,000 points higher, or 9.4 percent, at 23,185.62, nearly reversing the losses from Thursday, when the blue-chip index suffered its worst session since 1987.

The furious rally at the end showed volatility remains elevated in markets, a trend also apparent in Europe where major bourses gained but finished well below session highs as the World Health Organization targets Europe as the new epicenter of the pandemic.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the continent now had “more reported cases and deaths than the rest of the world combined, apart from China.” With AFP

Topics: Stock Market , Philippine Stock Exchange Index , Philippine Stock Exchange , PSE , PSEi , coronavirus disease 2019 , COVID-19
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