PHILIPPINE STOCKS continued to climb on Thursday as faster-than-expected gross domestic product (GDP) growth in the third quarter boosted market sentiment.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) went up by 33.19 points or 0.53% to close at 6,188.22 on Thursday, while the broader all shares index rose by 11.87 points or 0.35% to end at 3,329.38.

“The index notched its fifth straight session of gains this month as traders reacted to the stronger-than-expected Philippine third-quarter GDP print,” China Bank Capital Corp. Managing Director Juan Paolo E. Colet said in a Viber message.

The PSEi’s rise was “fueled by investor enthusiasm over the impressive third-quarter GDP figures,” AB Capital Securities, Inc. Vice-President Jovis L. Vistan likewise said in a Viber message.

“Leading up to the GDP report, the market had been establishing a support base, with a gradual alleviation of selling pressure. The prevailing sentiment is marked by reduced apprehension, particularly as geopolitical concerns appear to have been successfully contained, easing initial fears of the war spreading to other Arab nations,” Mr. Vistan added.

Philippine GDP grew by 5.9% in the third quarter, faster than the 4.3% expansion seen in the second quarter, but slower than the 7.7% in the same period a year ago, data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) on Thursday showed.

The third-quarter print was well above the 4.9% median GDP growth estimate of 18 economists in a BusinessWorld poll conducted last week.

The agriculture, forestry, and fishing, industry, and services sectors posted increases in the period to contribute to overall growth, the PSA said.

For the first nine months, economic growth averaged 5.5%, still below the government’s 6-7% full-year target.

“Sustained net foreign buying also helped push prices higher. Daily value turnover was below average as many institutional investors prefer to wait for the release of US October inflation data next week,” Mr. Colet added.

Net foreign buying went up to P171.26 million on Thursday from P98.33 million on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, value turnover climbed to P4.63 billion on Thursday with 418.81 million shares changing hands from the P3.76 billion with 341.53 million issues seen on Wednesday.

Most sectoral indices fell on Thursday. Mining and oil dropped by 78.68 points or 0.8% to 9,746.06; services went down by 2.02 points or 0.13% to 1,489.55; financials declined by 0.36 point or 0.02% to 1,773.25; and industrials slipped by 0.15 point to 8,679.69.

Meanwhile, property climbed by 45.87 points or 1.75% to 2,663.08, and holding firms increased by 44.50 points or 0.76% to 5,893.73.

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 96 versus 85, while 46 shares closed unchanged. — SJT