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Main index rebounds as investors buy bargains

THE MAIN INDEX rebounded slightly on Wednesday on bargain hunting even after the United States said it would ban oil imports from Russia.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) climbed by 12.15 points or 0.17% to close at 6,989.88 on Wednesday, while the broader all shares dropped by 7.17 points or 0.19% to close at 3,732.35.

“Philippine shares rallied on Wednesday, although off highs after a 4.26% plunge the prior day… The market rallied despite the US import ban on Russian oil on continued economic sanctions,” Papa Securities Corp. Equities Strategist Manny P. Cruz said in a text message.

“Philippine shares closed slightly higher in a still wildly volatile trading week as investors assessed the implications of the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the trajectory of global growth. The West Texas Intermediate crude oil surged on President Joseph R. Biden’s remarks that the US will ban Russian oil importation,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a Viber message.

A US ban on imports of Russia’s oil ratcheted up punishment for the invasion of Ukraine on Tuesday, Reuters reported.

Washington imposed an immediate ban on imports of Russian energy, sparking a further increase in the oil price, which rose around 4% on Tuesday. Prices have surged more than 30% since Russia’s incursion began on Feb. 24.

Russia — the world’s second-largest exporter of crude — has warned the cost will skyrocket further if the West implements bans.

Global benchmark Brent was last trading at $130.38 per barrel, up 1.88% on the day but still off a peak of $139.13 touched on Monday.

US West Texas Intermediate crude was up 1.52% at $125.58 per barrel.

“The local bourse edged higher this Wednesday as bargain hunters took opportunities out of its preceding 3-day 5.55% decline. Gains were trimmed, however, by last-minute selling,” Philstocks Financial, Inc. Senior Research Analyst Japhet Louis O. Tantiangco added in a Viber message.

Majority of sectoral indices ended in the green on Monday except for mining and oil, which fell by 1,004.46 points or 6.82% to 13,709.15, and holding firms, which lost 83.82 points or 1.24% to 6,629.04.

Meanwhile, financials climbed by 22.75 points or 1.43% to 1,606.97; services went up by 21.73 points or 1.15% to 1,912.10; industrials gained 76.94 points or 0.81% to 9,539.65; and property increased by 3.13 points or 0.09% to 3.354.07.

Value turnover decreased to P10.73 billion with 16.80 billion shares changing hands from P12.16 billion or 2.35 billion issues seen the previous trading day.

Decliners outnumbered advancers, 108 versus 102, while 33 names closed unchanged.

Net foreign selling dropped to P681.4 million on Wednesday from P850.32 million on Tuesday. — L.M.J.C. Jocson with Reuters

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