Net foreign buying helps fuel last-minute rebound

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By Arra B. Francia, Senior Reporter

LOCAL SHARES recovered on Wednesday as investors bought up select names towards the market’s close, with those abroad remaining predominantly bullish for the second straight day.

The 30-member Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) climbed 0.48% or 38.42 points to close at 7,967.90, recovering from Tuesday’s slump, while the broader all-shares index likewise rose 0.38% or 18.37 points to 4,804.82.

“It was a dull day for the market early on in the day, until a buy-up at the close led the index to finish 38.42 points higher,” Papa Securities Corp. Sales Associate Gabriel Jose F. Perez said in an e-mail.

Mr. Perez noted that sustained net foreign buying could drive the index higher in the coming days.

Foreign investors remained net buyers for the second straight day at P143.15 million, albeit smaller than Tuesday’s P609.78 million.

Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan also attributed the market’s performance to the rally near the end of the trading session.

“(I)nvestors quietly bought into key names towards closing. US stocks also rallied in the last 10 minutes of the session to end the day little-changed on Tuesday, weighed down by a continuing decline in growth stocks,” Mr. Limlingan said in a mobile phone message.

Overseas, major Wall Street indices were mostly unchanged as investors awaited the Federal Reserve’s policy decision.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.28% or 73.92 points to 26,909.43; the S&P 500 index edged up 0.03% or 0.96 point to 2,979.39; while the Nasdaq Composite dipped 0.04% or 3.28 points to 8,084.16.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.96%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index jumped 1.78%, while the Shanghai Composite tumbled by 0.41%.

Back home, all sectoral indices moved to positive territory, led by the mining and oil counter which surged 1.28% or 119.76 points to 9,473.64. Property rallied 0.82% or 33.28 points to 4,061.47; industrials went up 0.66% or 72.87 points to 10,965.83; holding firms gained 0.54% or 42.53 points to 7,890.15; services edged higher by 0.21% or 3.37 points to 1,617.04; while financials went up 0.01% or 0.24 point to 1,824.93.

Some 713.50 million shares worth P6.66 billion switched hands, compared to Tuesday’s 613.73 million issues worth P5.22 billion.

Stocks that advanced were nearly double those that lost at 119 to 65, while 58 others ended flat. Half of Wednesday’s 20 most active stocks ended with gains, including PXP Energy Corp. (up 11.17%); Xurpas, Inc. (up 9.38%); Ayala Land, Inc (up 2.04%); PLDT, Inc. (up 1.44%); and SM Investments Corp. (up 0.99%).

Seven stocks on the same list dropped, led by Puregold Price Club, Inc. (down 2.95%) and Globe Telecom, Inc. (down 1.52%).