BUSINESS NEWS IN BRIEF; PESO STANDS AT P50.108
Manila, Dec. 10, 2000 (BULLETIN) - The peso reference rate remains at P50.108 to the U.S. dollar, the weighted average rate pegged at the Philippine Dealing System of the Bankers Association of the Philippines last Friday.
Trial to impact on market
Developments in the impeachment trial of President Joseph Estrada in the Senate will determine the movement of Philippine share prices next week, analysts said Friday. "It's going to be a political development, more than anything. There is nothing economic that we are waiting for," said Russel Ong of Anscor-Hagedorn Securities Inc. Ong said the market on Friday did not react sharply to the trial's opening the previous day, but stressed investors were expected to closely watch the process by which it would be conducted. "In order not to scare investors further, it will have to appear impartial," Ong said, warning that any "smoking gun" against Estrada discovered during the proceedings could affect financial markets. The Philippine Stock Exchange composite index rose one percent or by 14.11 points this week to end at 1,400.36 points. Average daily turnover for the week fell to 248.45 million shares worth P562.2 million from 597.99 million shares worth P705.75 million in the previous week.(AFP)
SEC okays BPI block sale
The Securities and Exchange Commission said it had approved the requested block sale of 39.256 million Bank of the Philippine Islands shares to the Development Bank of Singapore. DBS earlier sought permission from the SEC to conduct the block sale, under which it will be buying the shares at a price of P94.40 each, or a total of P3.705 billion. The SEC said there will be three block transactions to complete the sale. DBS will acquire 25.957 million shares from Henry Sy, majority holder of SM Prime Holdings, another 11.591 million shares from the Phinma Group and 1.706 million shares from the Philamlife Group. The stake is equivalent to about 2.491 percent of BPI's total stock.
Firm expands in Cebu City
Rodrigo Rivera, Sr. and wife Dolores led the inauguration the other week of a modern business corporate center in Banilad, Cebu City. Rodrigo "Jun" Rivera, Jr., executive vice president of RD Corporation, said this is part of bringing RD Group in Visayas and people will be given work opportunities by the RD subsidiaries that are already established in Cebu such as high-end jewelry shop, pawnshops, banking, exporting, to name a few. According to Ryan Rivera, director of RD Corporation, and the eldest son of the Rivera's, RD Group of Companies will soon bring their services to Metro Manila and Luzon, as part of their expansion. He said RD Corporation has major stakes in commercial fishing, cold-storage, ship building and repair, lending investment, hotels and resorts operation, cattle ranches and others.
E-PCIB to sell thrift banks
Equitable PCI Bank said talks on the sale of its two thrift units, Ecology Bank and Mindanao Development Bank, are at a preliminary stage. "Talks with potential buyers of Ecology Bank and Mindanao Development Bank are all in the preliminary stages," the bank said in a statement. "Equitable PCI Bank is still keeping its options open - to sell its thrift bank(s) or to consolidate its various retail banking activities as part of the rationalization process - depending on which option will maximize shareholder value," it said.
Pakistan gets ADB loan
KARACHI (DPA) - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) board of directors has approved a $150 million loan for Pakistan, Pakistan's Business Recorder newspaper reported yesterday. The loan was provided as Small and Medium Enterprises Trade Enhancement Facility (SMETEF) to be used for boosting Pakistan exports, the report said. The approval was given by the ADB board on Thursday in Manila and according to newspaper is expected to increase Pakistani exports by $350 million annually. The ADB has also approved $0.8 million for country's Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) to be used to enhance organisation's capacity as promoter of export trade. The ADB would also provide partial risk guarantee of $150 million liability to reduce the risks associated with letters of credit issued by Pakistani banks for imports, the report added.
Reported by: Sol Jose Vanzi
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