Market stocks decline due to Federal Reserve and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas signaling rate hikes

In recent news, stock investors were displeased with the policy signals from monetary authorities both domestically and abroad, causing the local market to experience its third consecutive day of decline.

The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) dropped by 41.20 points, or 0.6 percent, ending at 6,837.34, while the broader All Shares index also weakened by 19.70 points, or 0.55 percent, closing at 3,567.89.

According to Mikhail Plopenio, a research and client engagement officer at Philstocks Financial Inc., investors were disheartened by indications suggesting that it would take longer than anticipated for interest rates to decrease.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Eli Remolona noted that it might be premature to reduce rates without a guarantee that inflation will stabilize within the two to four percent range. Similarly, US Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell emphasized the importance of maintaining rates until inflation is under control.

Luis Limlingan, the head of sales at Regina Capital Development Corp., pointed out that investors took into account market cues both locally and globally. The US policy rate remains at a 23-year high of 5.25 to 5.5 percent, while in the Philippines, it stands near a 17-year high at 6.5 percent.

Limlingan added, “Philippine shares continued to be sold down as investors digested Powell’s testimony before the House Financial Services Committee.”

During the trading day, P4.99 billion worth of shares were exchanged, with losers surpassing gainers at 109 to 64, and 44 issues remaining unchanged. All sectors in the PSEi, except for services, experienced declines, with the property sector recording the largest loss of 2.41 percent.

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