By James A. Loyola
The local stock market is seen to continue trading sideways with a downward bias as investors remain cautious with the approach of Holy Week.
Traders work beneath an electronic ticker at the trading floor of the Philippine Stock Exchange in Bonifacio Global City (BGC).(Bloomberg file photo)
“Investors may continue to sit on the sidelines as we go into the holiday season and maybe wait as long as after the election in May. Because of this, we may continue to see the index go lower,” said Eagle Equities Head of Research Christopher Mangun.
He noted that, “retail investors will continue to trade second-liners and speculative which has been the trend for the last few weeks.”
“The general investors’ sentiment has gone from ‘cautious’ to ‘extremely cautious’ as investors are probably anticipating an event that would be negative for the market or possibly waiting until the end of an event that could go either way. The event could be the coming elections in May, or it could be something else,” said Mangun.
Online brokerage 2TradeAsia.com said though that April coincides with shareholders' meetings that could prop-up excitement on corporate expansions, dividend declaration and other capital-raising exercises.
Given the present market sentiment, stock analysts are hesitant to recommend buys for specific stocks and mostly preferring to hold, prepare to sell or wait for lower prices before accumulating.
“Check on stocks armed with good asset base & cash flow sources that can support higher dividend payouts as they expand their business models. Time your entries by hunting for stocks that have already regressed from previous sessions' high,” said 2TradeAsia.com.
Top online brokerage firm COL Financial though is recommending a buy for Cebu Air because “we continue to like CEB given its continuous route and fleet and capacity expansions. Moreover, valuations remain attractive.”