PSEi down anew after Fed rate hike

THE stock market fell by nearly one percent on Thursday as investors reacted to a fresh US interest rate hike and a further weakening of the peso.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) lost 73.44 points or 0.97 percent to close at 7,529.54 while the broader All Shares slipped 0.78 percent or 36.17 points to end at 4,593.18.

China Bank Securities Corp. research director Garie Ouano said the drop was in response to the US Federal Reserve’s decision to hike its lending rate by 25 basis points while also signaling two more increases this year.

The peso’s continued decline versus the greenback also contributed to market result, he added.

After breaching P53:$1 on Wednesday, the currency shed four centavos on Thursday to close at P53.27 against the greenback.

IB Gimenez Securities, Inc. research head Joylin Telagen, meanwhile, pointed to investors having chosen to sell ahead of a long weekend, with the local bourse closed today (Friday) in celebration of Eid al-Fitr.

“[N]ext week’s main focus will be the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ meeting on the 20th,” she noted.

Holding firms were the only gainers on Thursday, up 0.11 percent. All other sectoral indices were in the red with property down the most by 3.11 percent.

More than 940 million issues valued at P12.3 billion changed hands.

Losers led winners, 110 to 76, while 57 issues were unchanged.

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