Peso, stock market start Nov with gains

THE peso and the stock market opened the month on a positive note, with the currency strengthening by more than 50 centavos and the bourse briefly rising to the 6,000 level.

In only the second trading day of a holiday-shortened week, the peso gained 63 centavos to P56.1 against the dollar, its strongest close in nearly three months.

It opened trading at P56.6:$1 and ranged from P55.93 to P56.6. Volume reached P1.838 billion, more than double the P860 million recorded in the previous session.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi), meanwhile, rose to as high as 6,083 in the morning before falling during the afternoon session. It still managed to end the day up 15.49 points, or 0.26 percent, to close at 5,989.27.

The broader All Shares also advanced by 0.27 percent, or 8.88 points, to 3,263.05.

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Claire Alviar, assistant research manager at Philstocks Financial Inc., said the bourse gained following the “positive cues from Wall Street amid the decline in the US’ long-term Treasury yields.”

Locally, she said sentiment was boosted by expectations that October inflation would be lower than September’s figure.

“Despite these gains, market participation remained weak, preventing the market from breaching the 6,000 level, with a net market value turnover of P3.28 billion,” Alviar said.

Regina Capital Development Corp. Managing Director Luis Limlingan, the PSEi edged slightly higher due to the latest S&P Global manufacturing data and a pullback in US Treasury yields.

China Bank Capital Corp. Managing Director Juan Paolo Colet, for his part, said the PSEi opened November in positive territory following “US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell’s remarks that were seen as less hawkish than expected.”

He added that the stock market’s failure to close at or above the 6,000 level was a sign of continuing caution ahead of upcoming US and Philippine economic data releases.

Except for financials, which declined by 0.48 percent, all sector indices closed in the green. Services had the biggest gain of 1.64 percent.

Volume was thin, with just over 301.34 million shares worth some P3.76 billion traded.

Advancers overwhelmed decliners, 106 to 59, while 49 were unchanged.

Mike Ibanoz

Mike Ibanoz is an Emmy Award-winning journalist who has spent the better part of two decades covering gadgets and apps, and helping people make smarter tech decisions.

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