Stocks rose Thursday, tracking a Wall Street rally fueled by healthy economic and earnings data, while traders kept a wary eye on Chinese military drills around Taiwan.
The Philippine Stock Exchange Index climbed 53.03 points, or 0.8 percent, to 6,483.11 on a value turnover of P5.8 billion. Gainer beat losers, 98 to 78, with 49 issues unchanged.
Conglomerate Ayala Corp. of the Ayala Group advanced 3.6 percent to P692.50, while PLDT Inc. of the Indonesia’s Salim Group, the biggest telecommunications firm, increased 2.3 percent to P1,760.
Manila Electric Co., the largest retailer of electricity, added 1.5 percent to P316.60, while Security Bank Corp., the eight biggest lender in terms of assets, rose 1.4 percent to P82.10.
Meanwhile, oil managed to clock some gains following another selloff that came on the back of fresh signs of weakening demand in the United States. That followed major producers announcing a small increase in output.
New York’s three main indexes surged after a report on the crucial US services sector showed surprise improvement, soothing worries about a possible recession in the world’s top economy.
That came as several companies—including Electronic Arts, Starbucks and Moderna—posted strong earnings, extending a broadly positive reporting season in the face of surging inflation and rising interest rates.
Hong Kong led gains, adding more than one percent, while there were also advances in Shanghai, Tokyo, Seoul, Singapore, Jakarta and Wellington.
However, Taipei fell again on worries that the Chinese maneuvers oeuvres would hit shipping lanes and flights into Taiwan.
Mumbai also dipped, while Sydney was flat.
All eyes are now on the release of US jobs data on Friday, which will provide the latest snapshot of the economy and could help guide the Federal Reserve in its debate on monetary policy.
Markets have swung this week after a number of Fed officials lined up to suggest there were still some big rate hikes likely and talk of cuts next year might be overdone.
That came after comments last week from bank chief Jerome Powell indicated the policy board could start easing its tightening campaign.
“Following last week’s Fed meeting that opened up the possibility of a slower hiking pace, markets are still running ‘risk-on’ despite the recent push back from Fed officials,” said SPI Asset Management’s Stephen Innes.
“But for stock investors, lower oil prices are a pleasure to behold as not only did the US 10-year yields drop but sliding oil prices also downshifted inflation expectations, supporting that slower hiking pace thesis.”
Both main oil contracts edged up Thursday, a day after prices tumbled to a six-month low as a spike in US inventories showed demand waning, while figures showed Americans driving less than summer 2022 when travel was smashed by COVID-19.
Crude has now given up all the gains seen in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, though the 100,000 barrel output increase by OPEC+ was brushed off by investors as too little to make an impact. With AFP