PHILIPPINE SHARES rallied for the third straight day on Thursday after the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) kept benchmark rates steady.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) climbed by by 0.4% or 27.62 points to close at 6,882.15, while the broader all shares index rose by 0.37% or 13.32 points to end at 3,601.55.

“Local shares edged higher as investors cheered the Monetary Board’s (MB) policy meeting decision today. As widely expected by the consensus, the MB left the key benchmark interest rate untouched at 6.5%,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a Viber message on Thursday.

The BSP kept its target reverse repurchase rate at a 16-year high of 6.5% during its first policy meeting for the year, as expected by 15 out of 17 analysts in a BusinessWorld poll conducted last week. Interest rates on the overnight deposit and lending facilities were likewise left unchanged at 6% and 7%, respectively.

This marked the third straight meeting that the BSP maintained rates following a 25-basis-point off-cycle hike on Oct. 26.

“This Thursday, the local market rose by 27.62 points (0.4%) to 6,882.15. This is as investors took positive cues from Wall Street’s rebound overnight amid bargain hunting after a huge sell-off driven by the US’ January inflation. The anticipated pause in the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ policy rates also added to the positive sentiment,” Philstocks Financial, Inc. Research and Engagement Officer Mikhail Philippe Q. Plopenio said in a Viber message.

Wall Street ended sharply higher on Wednesday as ride-hailing platforms Lyft and Uber rallied, while Nvidia displaced Alphabet as the US stock market’s third most valuable company, Reuters reported.

The S&P 500 climbed 0.96% to end the session at 5,000.62 points. The Nasdaq gained 1.3% to 15,859.15 points, while Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.4% to 38,424.27 points.

Wall Street indexes slumped to over one-week lows on Tuesday and the blue-chip Dow posted its worst day in 11 months, after data showed core consumer prices in January stayed at nearly double the Federal Reserve’s 2% target, forcing investors to reassess their rate cut expectations.

Back home, almost all of the market’s sectoral indices ended higher on Thursday, except for property, which fell by 0.37% or 11.17 points to 2,937.38.

Industrials climbed by 1.03% or 95.31 points to 9,290.27; services increased by 0.72% or 12.48 points to 1,729.45; financials went up by 0.62% or 12.22 points to 1,982.45; holding firms rose by 0.37% or 24.37 points to 6,471.55; and mining and oil gained by 0.32% or 28.98 points to end at 8,855.71.

Value turnover climbed to P5.31 billion on Thursday with 584.23 million issues changing hands from the P4.71 billion with 510.63 million shares traded the previous day.

Advancers beat decliners, 91 against 83, while 65 names ended unchanged.

Net foreign buying went down to P631.54 million on Thursday from P685.2 million on Wednesday. — R.M.D. Ochave with Reuters