Stocks, peso slip anew as Covid 19 cases rise further

Both the main stocks index, which fell to 6,900 level, and the peso weakened Wednesday due to reports of additional cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid 19) in more countries.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) ended to its lowest level for the year at 6,909.84 points, down by 3.86 percent or 277.60 points.

All other counters also finished the day's trade in the red, with the All Shares lower by 3.19 percent, or 136.05 points, to 4,129.37 points.

Industrial posted the biggest drop among the sectors with 4.42 percent and was trailed by the Property, 4.001 percent; Services, 3.89 percent; Holding Firms, 3.77 percent; Financials, 2.61 percent; and Mining and Oil, 2.34 percent.

Volume totaled to 1.35 billion shares amounting to PHP10.1 billion.

Losers led gainers at 184 to 27, while 30 shares were unchanged.

Citing reports about the warning of US's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on the further rise of Covid 19 cases and the additional new cases in more countries, Regina Capital Managing Director Luis Limlingan said several markets, not just the Philippines, fell overnight.

He said US's 10 year Treasury rates slipped to a record low, S and P registered the biggest four day drop since December 2018, and oil prices slipped by 3 percent to below USD50 per barrel.

He, however, also cited the statement by the People's Bank of China (PBOC) to extend 500 billion for relending and rediscounting funding to banks for loans to small companies and agriculture.

Asked for his thoughts on when the PSEi can have some reprieve from the current situation, Limlingan said this may happen when there are signs that the virus is not spreading.

Of course the discovery of a vaccine will drive the market up, he added.

The local currency depreciated to 51.035 Wednesday from 50.96 last Monday.

There is no trading on Tuesday due to the commemoration of the Edsa People Power anniversary.

A trader pointed this to risk off sentiments given the reports of new Covid 19 cases in several countries like Croatia, Austria, and Switzerland.

The peso opened the day at 51.085, weaker than its 50.98 start in the previous session.

It traded between 51.13 and 50.99, resulting in an average of 51.047.

Volume totaled to USD1.43 billion, higher than the USD1.30 billion in the previous session.

The peso is projected to trade between 51 and 51.20 to a US dollar on Thursday.

SOURCE : PHILIPPINES NEWS AGENCY

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