Market climbs; Ayala Land rises
The stock market rose Friday in step with the rest of Asia on the back of a stronger US dollar and investor optimism over President Donald Trump’s long anticipated tax cuts.
The Philippine Stock Exchange Index added 28.03 points, 0.3 percent, to 8,295.95 on a value turnover of P4.6 billion. Gainers and losers were even at 95 each, with 46 issues unchanged.
BDO Unibank Inc., the biggest lender in terms of assets, climbed 2.2 percent to P138, while Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., the second biggest bank, advanced 2.2 percent to P88.95.
Ayala Land Inc., a major property developer, gained 1.3 percent to P43.35, while DMCI Holdings Inc., which is into power generation, coal mining, water distribution and construction, rose 2.9 percent to P15.68.
Bourses across the region, including the major indexes in Tokyo and Hong Kong, tracked an upward swing on Wall Street after a slew of solid US corporate earnings reports and progress on Trump’s tax reform plan.
The dollar shot up after the European Central Bank announced Thursday that it would soon begin to cut back its monetary stimulus program.
“That US dollar surge at a time of solid global growth expectations is going to be good for (Asia)... as the depreciation it speaks to for many Asian currencies will improve their competitiveness,” said Greg McKenna, chief market strategist at AxiTrader.
Tokyo rose 1.2 percent, bolstered by the yen’s weakness against the dollar, a positive for Japanese exporters as it makes their products more competitive abroad and inflates their repatriated profits.
“Japanese stocks look bullish,” Hiroyasu Iida, head of the investment research center at Aizawa Securities in Tokyo, told Bloomberg News.
“Both in the US and Japan, companies will likely continue to have better earnings results. Good earnings results, the yen’s weakness and speculation over foreign investors’ purchases are fueling expectations over further gains in stocks.”
Among the gainers, Toyota rose 0.6 percent while Sony went up 0.2 percent.
But Subaru fell 2.6 percent on local media reports that uncertified employees have been inspecting vehicles at a domestic factory before they were shipped to dealers. The company declined to comment on the reports, saying an in-house probe was underway.
Hong Kong gained 0.7 percent, as the stock exchange’s red-carpeted trading floor prepared to close, having ceded its historic role to electronic and internet dealing.
Seoul was up 0.6 percent while Singapore rose 0.5 percent. But Sydney edged down 0.2 percent.
Thursday’s ECB announcement that it would halve its purchases of government and corporate bonds to 30 billion euros ($35 billion) a month sent Eurozone equities soaring.
The advance continued on Friday in opening trade with London edging up 0.1 percent while Paris added 0.3 percent and Frankfurt climbed 0.4 percent.
On Wall Street, the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.3 percent Thursday following solid earnings reports including from Ford and UPS as well as congressional progress on Trump’s tax cut plan. With AFP