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Posted on November 17, 2011

Index expanded

THREE FIRMS on the local bourse will be included in the global benchmark MSCI Philippines Index effective by the end of the month, a statement released yesterday showed. Diversified conglomerate San Miguel Corp., Gokongwei-led food firm Universal Robina Corp., and port operator International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) are set to join the MSCI’s index for the country by Nov. 30. This marks the index return of ICTSI and Universal Robina, which were previously taken out from the MSCI in May and August this year, respectively. The three stocks surged yesterday. San Miguel advanced by 4.44% to P124.80, while Universal Robina climbed by 8.35% to P51.90. ICTSI rose by 4.88% to P56.95 apiece. MSCI Inc., which manages the MSCI index, is a provider of investment decision support tools to investors globally. MSCI products and services include indices, portfolio risk and performance analytics.

Increase reported

SUPERMARKET CHAIN operator Puregold Price Club, Inc. doubled its net income in the third quarter of the year, attributing the feat to increased sales primarily from its expanded retail network, a disclosure to the local bourse yesterday showed. Puregold posted P295.33 million in net income, 110.20% higher than last year’s P140.55 million. The firm’s net sales, however, climbed by 29.46% to P9.65 billion, from last year’s P7.45 billion while cost of sales also surged by 29.15% to P8.33 billion from the previous year’s P6.45 billion. The figures brought the company’s January-to-September net income to P1.078 billion, 185% higher versus last year’s P378.25 million. “This was largely due to increase in turnover as a result of opening of new stores in 2011 and in the fourth quarter of 2010,” the company said. The company opened 15 stores in the nine-month period, four are in hypermarket format. This compares against the 12 stores which were opened in the last quarter of 2010. “These new stores account for 24% of total net sales for the nine months of operation during the year,” Puregold Price Club said. The company’s cost of sales, meanwhile, rose by 33.51% to P23.004 billion from last year’s P17.229 billion. “This was largely due to the opening of new stores, which was partially offset by increase in conditional discounts from the company’s suppliers,” the firm said. As of Oct. 30, the company had 83 stores. It is eyeing to close the year with 100 branches nationwide.

Loss narrowed

PAXYS, INC. narrowed its loss by 26% to P28.38 million in the third quarter from a loss of P38.28 million in the same period last year as the firm recorded additional revenues from new subsidiaries in the current year. According to a disclosure yesterday, service income of the firm grew 17% to P771.18 million from P656.99 million in the same period last year, while cost of services increased 9% to P356.93 million from P326.19 million. Operating expenses climbed 58% to P363.78 million from P230.55 million last year. “[Growth in service income revenues was] mainly due to the growth of SmartSalary [Pty. Ltd.]’s vehicle leasing business by 37% and additional revenue from AVC (Australian Vehicle Consultants Pty. Ltd.), a newly acquired fleet business in [the] Q3 (third quarter of) 2011,” Paxys said. Moreover, the rise in revenues was a result of a “favorable impact of the appreciation of the Australian dollar versus [the] Philippine peso,” Paxys said. During the quarter, the average exchange rate was P44.93 per Australian dollar, Paxys said, as compared to the average exchange rate of P40.89 per Australian dollar in the same quarter last year. This allowed net income in January to September to double to P81.39 million from P40.71 million last year.

Collections fall

PROFITS OF listed oil exploration firm Oriental Petroleum & Mineral Corp. for the third quarter fell by 61% amid lower collections from petroleum sales. Oriental Petroleum’s net income dropped to $581,305 in the third quarter from $1.5 million in the same period last year. Its comprehensive net income weakened by 56% to $677,305 from year-ago levels of $1.5 million. Revenues, mostly generated by petroleum operations, fell 47.9% to $3.7 million from $7.1 million last year. Oriental Petroleum’s net income for January to September surged by 116% to $5.2 million from year-ago levels of $2.4 million. Revenues for the nine-month period amounted to $15.8 million, up 28.5% from $12.3 million “attributed mainly to the increase in the average crude oil prices.” Oriental Petroleum is one of the consortium members of the Galoc oil field in Palawan.