Stocks slip as investors flock to bullish US market
Iris Gonzales (The Philippine Star) – December 19, 2020 – 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines — Asian stock markets, including the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE), declined yesterday after Wall Street hit a new high on optimism about economic stimulus and coronavirus vaccine development despite a spike in US unemployment claims.
The benchmark PSE index finished lower for a second straight day to 7,272.80, down 25.22 points or 0.34 percent.
Likewise, the broader All Shares index slipped by 0.94 points or 0.02 percent to end at 4,349.35.
Total value turnover was robust at P11.8 billion. Market breadth was balanced – 110 each for gainers and decliners – while 50 issues were unchanged.
Luis Limlingan of Regina Capital said the selldown in local shares was due to a combination of the FTSE rebalancing and investors flocking back into the US markets, betting on additional aid to be distributed before the year ends.
Overnight, Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index gained for a third day on optimism about progress in Washington toward a new economic aid package while the government reported the highest level of new jobless claims in three months.
Market action suggested investors see “bad data is good news” for progress toward a stimulus, said Mizuho Bank in a report.
Investors have been waiting since before the American presidential election Nov. 3 for legislators to agree on new aid to replace unemployment benefits that are expiring. That loss in income undercuts consumer spending that powers the biggest global economy and demand for imports from Asian and other suppliers.