PH shares skid as Israel prepares to occupy Gaza


MANILA  -Philippine stocks struggled during the start of the week on fears the Israeli-Hamas war would escalate, driving the benchmark index lower on Monday.

By the closing bell, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) sank 1.08 percent, or 67.51 points, to 6,198.83 while the broader All Shares index was down 0.73 percent, or 24.67 points, to 3,359.90.

“The local bourse opened the week below 6,200 as investors continued to monitor the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict,” Luis Gerardo Limlingan, head of sales at stock brokerage house Regina Capital Development, said in a note to investors on Monday.

Israel continued to pound Gaza with air strikes in response to the Hamas attacks last Oct. 7. As jitters grip the world over the next stage of the war, more than a million civilians have fled Gaza in what many fear has become a full-blown humanitarian crisis.

Limlingan also noted that oil prices surged amid the probability of geopolitical tensions spilling into the greater Middle East.

READ: Nervous markets eye Gaza as oil hovers above $90

Mining and oil (+0.29 percent) was the sole subsector that posted gains for the session. Losers were led by holding firms (-1.53 percent) and financials (-1.12 percent).

Data from the stock exchange showed 815.38 million shares valued at P3.76 billion changing hands while foreigners were mostly sellers for a net amount of P369.15 million.

BDO Unibank Inc. was the top traded stock as it slumped 1.02 percent to P135.20 per share. It was followed by Jollibee Foods Corp., down 1.18 percent to P218; SM Investments Corp., down 2.79 percent to P802; SM Prime Holdings Inc., down 0.32 percent to P30.90; and Puregold Price Club Inc., down 1.85 percent to P29.20 per share.

Ayala Land Inc. was down 1.54 percent to P28.85; Century Pacific Food Inc., up 0.17 percent to P29.50; Monde Nissin Corp., down 3.96 percent to 8.25; DITO CME Holdings, up 12.31 percent to P3.65; and Semirara Mining and Power Corp., down 0.56 percent to P35.80 per share.

Overall, there were 116 losers against 64 advancers while 35 companies closed unchanged, data from the stock exchange also showed. INQ

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