LOCAL SHARES sustained their gains on Wednesday, moving in step with regional peers, as investors reacted to the gradual reopening of economies and the meeting of the US Federal Reserve.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) picked up 68.99 points or 1.23% to close at 5,643.97 yesterday. The broader all shares index added 30.53 points or 0.89% to 3,425.28.

“Market continued to rebound today together with most of the regional markets on easing lockdowns that would start to reopen the economy and optimism on the US Fed meeting tonight to continue to maintain low interest rate so as to support their economy,” Diversified Securities, Inc. Equity Trader Aniceto K. Pangan said in a text message on Wednesday.

Some areas in the Philippines will be on their last day of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) today, April 30, as the government moves them to a general community quarantine (GCQ) by May 1 for showing signs of being low-risk or medium risk to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.

This resulted in optimism among investors that the jumpstarting of economies in these areas will signal the recovery of the country after more than a month of lockdown in Luzon.

Philstocks Financial, Inc. Senior Research Analyst Japhet Louis O. Tantiangco also said investors are keeping a close watch on the Fed meeting.

“Investors are waiting for clues from the US’ monetary authority on how their policy stance would be and what would this mean for the US economy, one of the major economies of the globe,” Mr. Tantiangco said in a text message.

Most Asian stocks closed in green territory on Wednesday. Japan’s Topix index climbed 0.13%, China’s Shanghai Shenzhen CSI 300 Index added 0.46%, South Korea’s Kospi index grew 0.70%.

Back home, all sectoral indices at the local bourse ended the session with gains. Property rose 82.50 points or 2.94% to 2,887.73; mining and oil gained 57.30 points or 1.23% to 4,692.94; services improved 11.23 points or 0.83% to 1,349; holding firms increased 44.66 points or 0.81% to 5,509.37; industrials picked up 50.20 points or 0.67% to 7,465.39; and financials climbed 0.52 point or 0.04% to 1,169.87.

Value turnover stood at P4.54 billion with 584.34 million issues switching hands. Mr. Tantiangco said this is lower than the bourse’s year-to-date average of P5.78 billion, “showing that the rally lacks conviction.”

Advancers outran decliners, 110 against 78, while 49 names ended unchanged.

Foreign investors remained net sellers for the 31st straight day with net outflows worth P726.05 million, up from the previous day’s P471.71 million.

“(Today) is the last trading day for the week because of the Labor Day holiday. We may see some profit taking (today) which will limit its gains for the week,” AAA Southeast Equities, Inc. Research Head Christopher John Mangun said in an e-mail. — Denise A. Valdez