Stocks rise on bargain hunting, strong earnings

PHILIPPINE SHARES rebounded on Wednesday on bargain hunting after several days of decline and following the release of more corporate results.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) went up by 50.93 points or 0.77% to close at 6,607.13 on Wednesday, while the broader all shares index gained 12.19 points or 0.34% to end at 3,539.36.

Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a Viber message that stocks went up as investors gained optimism as listed firms posted strong results.

“Local shares were able to recuperate from the prior meltdown the past couple of days despite the decline in the US markets. Investors seem to be optimistic regarding the better-than-expected releases of corporate earnings,” Mr. Limlingan said.

Philstocks Financial, Inc. Research Analyst Claire T. Alviar said the local bourse ended in the green on bargain hunting after the market’s recent decline.

“Also, the bourse followed the trend in Asian markets as investors digested some economic data in the region. China’s manufacturing PMI (purchasing managers’ index) increased,” Ms. Alviar added in a Viber message.

Asian stocks rebounded from a two-month low on Wednesday as data showing China’s manufacturing activity in February expanded at the fastest pace in more than a decade cheered investors, offsetting fears over rising interest rates, Reuters reported.

China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index stood at 52.6 last month against 50.1 in January, based on data from the National Bureau of Statistics, smashing expectations as production zoomed after the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions late last year.

That sent MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan surging more than 1% to 516.84, after having bottomed at 509.40 — its lowest since early January — earlier in the session.

Back home, almost all sectoral indices closed higher on Wednesday. Holding firms went up by 152.78 points or 2.44% to 6,393.59; property added 34.93 points or 1.24% to end at 2,835.90; mining and oil rose by 41.41 points or 0.38% to 10,766.44; and services climbed by 1.11 points or 0.06% to 1,614.20.

Meanwhile, industrials declined by 108.74 points or 1.12% to 9,527.37 and financials went down by 11.19 points or 0.61% to 1,819.96.

Value turnover went down to P7 billion on Wednesday with 715.80 million shares changing hands from P21.18 billion with 1.74 billion issues traded on Tuesday.

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 100 versus 92, while 44 names closed unchanged.

Net foreign selling dropped to P579.52 million from P3.62 billion on Tuesday.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort placed the PSEi’s major support at 6,250 and resistance at 7,000-7,100. — Ashley Erika O. Jose with Reuters