Stocks drop further ahead of Biden inauguration

By Revin Mikhael D. Ochave, Reporter

PHILIPPINE shares closed lower for the fourth consecutive day on Wednesday ahead of the upcoming change of leadership in the United States.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) fell 55.15 points or 0.76% to end at 7,143.30 yesterday, while the broader all shares index declined 19.62 points or 0.45% to close at 4,300.12.

Timson Securities, Inc. Head of Online Trading Darren Blaine T. Pangan said in a mobile phone message that the local market ended lower ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden as the US president and despite the strong performance of Asian markets.

Mr. Biden was set to be inaugurated as the 46th US president yesterday in Washington. He will be the oldest president in US history.

Mr. Trump plans to leave the White House ahead of the Biden inauguration, thus breaking the political tradition of US presidents meeting their successors that signals a peaceful transfer of power.

Philstocks Financial, Inc. Senior Research Analyst Japhet Louis O. Tantiangco said in a mobile phone message that the local bourse declined as investors continued to book profits amid the lack of positive catalysts.

Mr. Tantiangco said market sentiment was also dampened by the continued spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) across the country.

The Department of Health on Wednesday reported 1,862 new COVID-19 cases, bringing total infections to 505,939.

Zamboanga City posted the highest number of new cases at 206, followed by Davao City at 109, Kalinga at 102, Quezon City at 77, and Benguet at 74.

Majority of sectoral indices ended lower on Wednesday, with services being the sole gainer, rising 20.69 points or 1.34% to finish at 1,560.37.

Meanwhile, mining and oil dropped 210.41 points or 2.18% to 9,403.52; holding firms retreated 89.45 points or 1.2% to 7,325.74; industrials went down 99.54 points or 1.06% to 9,236.04; property decreased 29.29 points or 0.8% to 3,617.2; and financials lost 11.65 points or 0.78% to 1,465.18.

Decliners beat advancers, 137 against 91, while 40 names ended unchanged.

Value turnover on Wednesday amounted to P13.10 billion with 121.68 billion issues switching hands, lower than the P16.03 billion with 144.4 billion issues seen in the previous trading session.

Net foreign selling reached P688.39 million on Wednesday, lower than the P1.21 billion in net outflows recorded on Tuesday.

“Support remains at 7,000, while nearest resistance may be pegged at 7,300,” Timson Securities’ Mr. Pangan said.

“The PSEi is already below the 7,150 to 7,200 support range. If it is unable to regain its ground at the said range, the local market may trade with 6,900 as the new support and 7,150 to 7,200 as the resistance area,” Philstocks Financial’s Mr. Tantiangco said.

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