The peso and the stock market closed the week on a positive note amid continued concerns about inflation and additional interest rate hikes.
The currency gained 19 cents to 54.82 pesos against the dollar, while the Philippine Stock Exchange’s benchmark index (PSEi) added 32.92 points, or 0.50 percent, to 6655.37.
The broader All Shares also gained 15.24 points, or 0.43 percent, to close at 3564.42.
Michael Ricafort, chief economist at Rizal Commercial Banking Corp., said the peso has been “relatively stable lately after the local stock market index PSEi continued to correct higher for the third straight day after falling for four consecutive trading days.”
He added that the currency’s rise also came amid “continued improvement in sales/earnings results for most listed companies recently, supporting estimates as the economy reopens to greater normality.”
On the stock market, Ricafort said the peso’s strength “helped lift market sentiment after recent signals from local monetary authorities… [that] they are ready to use the tools available in the policy toolbox to help stabilize inflation.”
Michael Popenio, Financial Research and Engagement Specialist at Philstocks, echoed this, stating that investors have “digested the positive statements from Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Felipe Medalla…that the country’s economic growth is likely to hit the 6% to 7% target despite rising interest rates.”
However, “worries about inflation and rate hikes are still there, holding back gains in Friday’s session,” he added.
Market participation remained low as net turnover was only 5.69 billion pesos, below the year-to-date average of 6.61 billion pesos.
Foreigners remained net sellers with a net outflow of 501.96 million pesos.
Regina Capital Development Corp. Meanwhile, managing director Luis Limlingan also said that “Philippine stocks continue to rise as investors digest more of the company’s earnings.”
US market results over the weekend could influence the direction of PSEi, and Limlingan said investors will be watching for new data releases and further comments from Federal Reserve officials.
The peso opened at 54.95 pesos: $1 and fluctuated between 54.745 and 54.98 pesos. Volume reached $1286, up from $1276 trillion in the previous session.
In the stock market, all sectoral indices rose, except for real estate, which fell by 0.53 percent. Mining and oil led growth with a 1.67% gain.
Just under 829 million shares worth 6.48 billion pesos changed hands. The winners outscored the losers from 84 to 73, while 52 remained unchanged.