Peso, PSEi end week down due to ongoing uncertainties

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The trading floor of the Philippine Stock Exchange. (Reuters file photo)

MANILA – Profit-taking continued Friday and resulted in the depreciation of the Philippine peso and contraction of the main stocks index.

The peso shed P0.27 and finished the week at 49.90 from 49.63 in the previous day.

A trader pointed this to hawkish statements from Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen, who hinted at more rate hikes this year after the total of 75 basis points increase, at 25 basis points each, in December 2016; and March and June this year.

The Fed also disclosed a plan to cut securities holdings as part of the normalization of balance sheets.
With this news, the dollar gained against the local currency, with the peso opening the last day of the week at 49.80 from 49.45 in the previous session.

It even declined to 49.90 mid-trade but was able to recover to 49.77 resulting in an average of 49.85.

Volume for the day reached USD898.8 million, more than thrice the USD285 million a day ago.

The currency pair is seen to trade between 49.60 and 49.90 next week.

Similarly, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) slid for the second consecutive day after it gave up 1.03 percent, or 82.27 points, to 7,882.22 points.

Foreign selling was high, another trader said, referring to the Php 23.76 billion volume for the day but also noted that foreign buying is greater at Php 24.4 billion.

The trader attributed this to uncertainties on developments overseas such as the policy normalization in the US.
All Shares tracked the main gauge after it declined by 0.69 percent, or 32.41 points, to 4,695.15 points.

Most of the sectors also finished on the red and these are the Holding Firms, 2.11 percent; Financials, 0.73 percent; Services, 0.67 percent; and Industrial, 0.19 percent.

On the other hand, Mining and Oil and Property rose by 0.59 percent and 0.08 percent, respectively.

Volume for the day reached 2.2 billion shares, with value surging to Php 29.07 billion.
Losers led gainers at 111 to 85 while 50 stocks were unchanged.