THE MAIN INDEX fell to the 6,100 level anew on Thursday due to inflation concerns and increased selling pressure.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) went down by 58.62 points or 0.93% to end at 6,183.07 on Thursday, while the broader all shares index dropped by 21.26 points or 0.63% to close at 3,346.99.

“Stocks declined due to mounting concerns related to inflationary pressures, with a particular focus on the vulnerability of the Philippines in the face of the prevailing global food situation,” AB Capital Securities, Inc. Vice-President Jovis L. Vistan said in a Viber message.

“The market took a breather after three days of gains, with selling pressure bringing the index back below 6,200. Data from Europe, China, and the US dampened sentiment,” China Bank Capital Corp. Managing Director Juan Paolo E. Colet said in a Viber message.

Philippine headline inflation accelerated to 5.3% in August from 4.7% in July.

Still, it settled within the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) 4.8-5.6% forecast for the month.

For the first eight months, inflation averaged at 6.6%, still above the BSP’s 5.6% forecast and 2-4% target for the year.

“Additionally, the strength of the US dollar against Asian currencies has had a notable impact on the Philippine peso, exacerbating the country’s economic challenges,” Mr. Vistan said.

The dollar index — which measures the currency against six developed-market peers, including the yen and euro — ticked up 0.07% to 104.93, Reuters reported. It jumped to the highest since March 15 on Wednesday at 105.03.

The peso closed at P56.76 per dollar on Thursday, rising by 15 centavos from its P56.94 finish — a near nine-month low — on Wednesday.

“The stronger than expected ISM (Institute for Supply Management) services index for August, which reached 54.4, its highest since February 2023, signaled strong US economic activity and led some investors to scale back expectations of the path of the Federal Reserve’s interest rate cuts next year,” Mr. Colet added.

Most sectoral indices closed lower on Thursday. Holding firms declined by 88.57 points or 1.46% to 5,938.71; property fell by 28.16 points or 1.09% to 2,544.33; financials went down by 19.58 points or 1.07% to 1,800.42; mining and oil dropped by 54.21 points or 0.53% to 10,081.85; and industrials lost 18.03 points or 0.2% to end at 8,816.64.

Meanwhile, services rose by 6.56 points or 0.43% to 1,524.07.

Value turnover went up to P3.85 billion on Thursday with 322.39 million shares changing hands from the P3.84 billion with 459.94 million issues seen on Wednesday.

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 96 to 62, while 50 names closed unchanged.

Net foreign selling rose to P720.31 million on Thursday from P663.89 million on Wednesday.

For Friday, Mr. Vistan placed the PSEi’s support at 6,100 and resistance at 6,300. — SJT with Reuters