Local shares decline further ahead of key data

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PHILIPPINE shares declined along with most markets in the region on Thursday as investors await more corporate earnings reports and key data releases, and with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases in neighboring countries starting to rise again.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) dropped by 72.42 points or 1% to close at 7,157.73 on Thursday, while the broader all shares index went down by 32.97 points or 0.74% to 4,420.85.

“Philippine shares took a breather after rallying as investors braced for the release of more [third quarter] earnings, the release of GDP (gross domestic product), and more global inflationary concerns,” Luis A. Limlingan, head of sales at Regina Capital Development Corp., said in a Viber message.

“The market slid together with most markets in the region as investors chose to stay on the sidelines while digesting the reports of a surge in COVID-19 cases in some countries like China and Singapore,” Timson Securities, Inc. Trader Darren Blaine T. Pangan said in a separate Viber message.

Asian stocks fell across the board on Thursday as investors were unsettled by risks of renewed US-China tension, Reuters reported.

Investor focus was squarely on developments in China, which is grappling with an economic slowdown due to an energy crunch and a crisis in its property sector, as well as fresh COVID-19 outbreaks.

Japan’s Nikkei declined 0.96%, China’s Shanghai Composite index went down by one percent, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index went down by 0.49% on Thursday.

In China, Ejin county was put on lockdown after a Delta surge, forcing 35,700 residents to stay home to curb the spread of the more transmissible COVID-19 variant. Beijing has banned residents from areas in the country that have reported locally transmitted COVID-19 infections.

Majority of sectoral indices closed in the red except for services, which gained 20.08 points or 1.05% to 1,926.56.

Meanwhile, mining and oil shaved off 372.64 points or 3.55% to 10,104.78; property lost 86.44 points or 2.65% to 3,164.70; holding firms declined by 89.92 points or 1.26% to finish at 7,029.06; financials went down by 16.44 points or 1.04% to 1,550.65; and industrials gave up 68.80 points or 0.62% to 10,876.87.

Value turnover inched down to P7.16 billion with 921.51 million shares switching hands on Thursday from the P7.75 billion with 746.19 million issues traded the previous day.

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 121 against 85, as 41 names closed unchanged.

Foreigners turned sellers, logging P656.64 million in net outflows on Thursday versus the P184.04 million in net purchases recorded on Wednesday.

“[The 6,940-level] remains the support area, while 7,320 seems to be the closest resistance level to watch in the coming days,” Mr. Pangan said. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte with Reuters

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