THE MAIN INDEX sustained its upward trajectory on Tuesday to break into the 6,000 level on bargain hunting as investors held on to hopes of an economic recovery.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gained 98.18 points or 1.65% to close at 6,034.03. The broader all shares index also went up 46.57 points or 1.30% to end at 3,604.58.

“Last week’s decline became an opportunity for investors to hunt for bargains. Investors are now looking into the economic recovery,” said Claire T. Alviar, a research associate at Philstocks Financial, Inc.

The softening in the growth of new local coronavirus cases, which was at 1,383 on Monday, was a major factor in improving investor sentiment, Ms. Alviar said in a text message on Tuesday.

The total tally of cases in the Philippines stood at 238,727 as of Monday, where 49,931 are active and 3,890 have died. This helped support belief that the coronavirus curve may have already flattened, as claimed by a researcher from the University of the Philippines.

However, trading volume remained tepid as many remained wary of the continued growth of coronavirus cases. Value turnover stood at P4.57 billion with 1.19 billion issues switching hands, against the previous day’s P3.9 billion with 2.95 billion issues.

“There’s no risk yet of stricter lockdown measures, and businesses are gradually reopening, with the expected improvement in consumer and business confidence in the coming months that may increase demand for loans and improve consumption — very essential for economic recovery,” Ms. Alviar said.

The PSEi’s climb on Tuesday is also in anticipation of the reopening of US markets after their Labor Day holiday on Monday, Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a mobile message.

Most Asian stocks were also faring in green territory when the local market closed.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.4%. Japan’s Nikkei added 0.8%, even as revised data confirmed the nation had slumped into its worst postwar contraction, with business spending taking a bigger hit from the coronavirus pandemic than initially estimated.

Most sectoral indices in the PSE ended Tuesday’s session in green territory: industrials rose 176.71 points or 2.23% to 8,092.97; financials added 24.12 points or 2.10% to 1,171.13; property gained 44.73 points or 1.63% to 2,788.15; holding firms improved 82.60 points or 1.34% to 6,246.72; and services climbed 14.07 points or 0.95% to close the session at 1,491.22.

The sole declining index was mining and oil, which lost 44.99 points or 0.73% to 6,077.78 at the end of session.

Advancers outpaced decliners, 112 against 84, while 46 names ended unchanged.

Foreign investors were net sellers again, but net outflows were reduced to P647.32 million on Tuesday from P841.39 million on Monday. — with Reuters


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