SHARES started the week in the green on last-minute buying ahead of the announcement of new quarantine restrictions, which was scheduled to happen after the market’s close on Monday.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) inched up by 9.70 points or 0.14% to close at 6,917.49 on Monday, while the all shares index went up by 16.71 points or 0.4% to 4,191.36.

Philstocks Financial, Inc. Senior Research Analyst Japhet Louis O. Tantiangco said last-minute buying boosted the index.

“Monday’s gains may also be reflective of the optimistic anticipation of investors with regard to the government’s decision on the quarantine classifications of the NCR (National Capital Region) Plus and MECQ (modified enhanced community quarantine) placed areas in the country after June 15,” Mr. Tantiangco said in a Viber message.

The Palace was set to announce the quarantine classification of Metro Manila and nearby provinces of Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal on Monday evening as current restrictions are only in effect until Tuesday, June 15.

“The PSEi ended slightly higher but mainly flat as losses on blue chip property and holding firms that were up last week were offset by gains in other issues that have not rallied as much within the same sectors,” AAA Southeast Equities, Inc. Research Head Christopher John Mangun said in an e-mail.

Sectoral indices were split on Monday. Financials gained 19.89 points or 1.35% to close at 1,488.08; services went up by 17.92 points or 1.16% to 1,560.46; and industrials improved by 69.03 points or 0.74% to finish at 9,371.43.

Meanwhile, mining and oil lost 57.47 points or 0.6% to 9,400.08; property declined by 20.15 points or 0.58% to end at 3,403.21; and holding firms shed 23.68 points or 0.34% to 6,935.32.

Value turnover increased to P6.32 billion with 3.93 billion shares switching hands on Monday, from the P5.76 billion with 4.13 billion issues traded on Friday.

Advancers outnumbered decliners, 117 versus 91, while 54 names closed unchanged.

Foreigners turned buyers anew with P20.36 million in net purchases on Monday from the P155.36 million in net outflows seen on Friday.

Philstocks Financial’s Mr. Tantiangco said he expects selling pressure to last until Tuesday.

“However, if… we’ll see easing of restrictions, primarily in the NCR Plus area, then we may see positive sentiment in [today’s] trading which could overshadow the selling pressures leading to an extension of the market’s gains,” Mr. Tantiangco said.

“The PSEi may continue higher and break above its major resistance between 6,950 and 7,000 as investors hold on to positions and gain more confidence in the economic recovery,” AAA Southeast Equities’ Mr. Mangun said.

“Hopefully, as COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) is properly addressed and improved in the coming year… we will see a long-term reversal in the market later because the fundamentals will catch up,” Summit Securities, Inc. President Harry G. Liu added. — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte