By Arra B. Francia, Reporter
LOCAL STOCKS retreated on Wednesday amid a lack of leads that could boost investor sentiment.
The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) pulled back 0.58% or 45.98 points to close at 7,861.05, failing to hold the 7,900 level it breached in the previous session. The broader all- shares index also went down 0.5% or 24.55 points to 4,835.90.
“Philippine shares sputtered to the finish line today with a lack of follow-through after opening, as investors awaited news on US-China trade talks,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a mobile phone message on Wednesday.
US and Chinese officials will continue high-level trade talks this week, with US officials set to visit Beijing on Thursday and Friday. Chinese officials will then travel to the US in the following week.
Eastern Development Securities Corp. trader Jayniel Carl S. Manuel, meanwhile, attributed Wednesday’s performance to the PSEi’s general sideways trend for the week.
“I expect a neutral movement in the next coming days for the reason that we still don’t have much catalyst yet in order for our market to enter the bull market territory,” Mr. Manuel said in a text message.
The PSEi failed to mirror the ascent seen in Wall Street overnight, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumping 0.55% or 140.90 points to 25,657.73. The S&P 500 index climbed 0.72% or 20.10 points to 2,818.46, while the S&P 500 index rose 0.71% or 53.98 points to 7,691.52.
Meanwhile, Asian markets were mixed as investors continued to worry over the global economy’s slowdown. Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropped 0.23% to close at 21,378.73, while South Korea’s Kospi index also slid 0.15% to end at 2,145.62.
Back home, services was the lone counter that managed to eke out gains after adding 0.03% or 0.61 point to 1,595.51.
The rest declined, led by financials which slumped 0.93% or 16.45 points to 1,747.50. Mining and oil plunged 0.9% or 73.48 points to 8,039.35; industrials went down 0.8% or 94.54 points to 11,587.62; property dropped 0.74% or 30.56 points to 4,054.77; while holding firms slipped 0.43% or 33.64 points to 7,745.03.
Some 1.20 billion issues switched hands valued at P5.60 billion, down from the previous session’s P5.39 billion. Decliners were almost double the advancers, 139 to 71, while 49 names were unchanged.
Net foreign inflows slipped to P321.88 million, slightly lower than Tuesday’s P369.81 million. This marked the fifth straight session that foreign investors were in buying mode.
The list of 20 most actively traded stocks showed 12 losers, including GT Capital Holdings, Inc. (down 3.28%), Ayala Land, Inc. (2.13%), and Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (down 2.23%). GT Capital reported its 2018 earnings report on Wednesday, showing a six percent profit drop due to lower auto sales.