PSEi, PHP welcome week positive

MANILA- - Bargain hunting after last Friday's sell-off lifted the local equities market but the Philippine peso closed little changed against the greenback but on the positive amid expectations of a hike in the Federal Reserve rates this week.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) saw it biggest uptick in a month after it rose 1.21 percent or 86.82 points to 7,233.09 points.

A trader said investors took on the chance to buy stocks after the index' plunge last week, thus, the increases in all the indices, with the All Shares index up 0.82 percent, or 35.62 points, to 4,379.01 points.

The sectors were led by the Holding Firms, which rose 1.90 percent followed by Mining and Oil with 1.04 percent.

Property rose 0.84 percent, Financials, 0.66 percent; Industrial, 0.61 percent; and Services, 0.20 percent.

Volume totalled to 1.43 billion shares amounting to Php 6.5 billion.

Both advancers and decliners had equal footing at 94 while 43 shares remained unchanged.

The peso finished the week's first trading day at 50.32 from 50.36 Friday last week.

A trader noted the slow trading in the morning session after investors gave up a bit of their dollar holdings but corporate demand for the dollar buoyed the local currency in the second half of the day.

Some re-positioning was also noticed ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC)meeting on March 14-15, the trader said.

For the day, the local currency opened at 50.28, an improvement from the 50.39 in the previous session.

It traded between 50.33 and 50.27 resulting to an average of 50.29.

Volume of trade reached USD 233.4 million, lower than the USD 304.55 million last Friday.

The currency pair is seen to trade between 50.20 and 50.40 Tuesday.

Source: Philippines News Agency