Local Equities Climb on Thin Volumes

The local equities market climbed on thin volumes ahead of the Christmas break.

Last Monday, the PSEi went up by 19.75 points, or +0.34%, to 5,854.88. Almost all sectoral indices were higher led by financials (+1.48%), mining and oil (+0.88%), and industrials (+0.75%) while holding firms (-0.33%) and services (-0.10%) were in the red.

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Market breadth was negative with 86 declines outnumbering 69 advances, while 34 issues were unchanged. Total value turnover amounted to Php5.26 billion. Foreign investors were net sellers at Php0.06 billion.

Data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed that banking offices expanded to 9,720 as of end-September from 9,301 registered last year and 9,543 in the first half of this year. Broken down, the total number of bank branches increased to 9,044 as of September from 8,596 recorded in the same period a year ago.

Meanwhile, the number of head offices fell to 676 as of September this year from 705 last year and 683 as of the second quarter of this year. Moreover, BSP’s data also revealed that universal and commercial banks represented the bulk of the industry, making up more than 50% of the total number of bank offices. These were followed by rural and cooperative banks.

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