INDEX SURGES TO 9-YEAR HIGH ON RENEWED CONFIDENCE IN RP
MANILA, NOVEMBER 18, 2006 (STAR) Share prices closed 0.85 percent higher yesterday, its best close in nine years amid renewed confidence in the economy, dealers said.
The composite index added 23.95 points to 2,842.54 after trading between 2,848.14 and 2,812.79. It was the index’s best finish since June 20, 1997 when it settled at 2,881.73.
The broader all-share index rose 16.20 points to 1,759.49.
Gainers overwhelmed losers 86 to 26, while 55 stocks were unchanged with 3.6 billion shares traded worth P2.4 billion.
"Investors are convinced that the market’s uptrend is still very much intact. The corrections that we saw earlier this week are normal and, in the absence of negative leads, the uptrend should continue," said Mark Alan Canizares of CitisecOnline.com.
San Miguel A and B shares closed flat at P65 and P73, respectively.
The country posted a fifth monthly external payments surplus in October, the central bank said. The 10-month surplus of $3.2 billion exceeded the bank’s $1.8-billion full-year forecast.
"It will continue, it’s sustainable," said Rico Gomez, who helps manage about $1 billion at Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. in Manila. "You’re now trading on inherent values of companies that will continue to do well in 2007."
Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT), the country’s biggest company by market value, gained P30, or 1.2 percent, to P2,475. SM Prime, its largest shopping mall company, rose 45 centavos, or 4.6 percent, to P10.25. Metropolitan Bank and Trust Co., the country’s biggest lender by assets, climbed P1, or 1.9 percent, to 53.
Megaworld Corp., a builder of residential and office buildings, rose four centavos, or 1.8 percent, to P2.26. The company said it won’t sell more shares through 2009. The day before, it reduced the number of shares it would sell in a rights offering and the maximum discount on the stock.
Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. gained P2.50, or 11 percent, to P26. Rizal yesterday said it sold P4.6 billion of bad loans and assets, giving it more cash to lend. – AFP
Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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