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PSEi climbs back to 5,300 after flood-induced trading suspension means BUSINESS

MANILA - After a one-day trading suspension, Philippine share prices on Wednesday rallied to return above the 5,300 level as investors caught up with the gains in global markets.

At the Philippine Stock Exchange, the composite index added 24.51 points or 0.46 percent to close at 5,308.67. Leading the market's rally was the property counter, which rose 2.88 percent.

However, market breadth was negative as decliners beat advancers, 80 to 71, while 55 stocks were unchanged. A total of 1.51 billion stocks worth P6.11  billion changed hands.

"We basically played catch-up with global markets. We mostly followed the continued trends overseas as investors speculate that different central banks will help financial markets soften the impact of the ongoing crisis," said Astro del  Castillo, managing director at First Grade Finance Inc.

Overnight, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 51.09 points or 0.4percent to 13,168.60 on stronger corporate profit reports and optimism that central banks will act to boost growth. Regional markets were up as well.

Local corporate earnings and overseas developments will continue to influence trades as the market moves within the 5,250 to 5,350 level for the rest of the week, del Castillo said.

Actively traded stocks were Ayala Land, PLDT, Megaworld, Ayala Corp. and BDO.

Top gainers were Forum Pacific, Euro-Med and Tanduay, while the biggest losers were BHI Holdings, Concrete Aggregates and Abacus Consolidated.

The PSE on Tuesday suspended trading as well as clearing and settlement at the Securities Clearing Corp. of the Philippines after heavy rains caused floods in Metro Manila and nearby provinces.

Del Castillo said the latest inflation data, which hit a six-month high in July to 3.2 percent from 2.8 percent in the previous month, was "not surprising" and was hardly a factor in the trades.