Stocks up despite COVID concerns

Published March 9, 2021, 4:48 PM

by James A. Loyola

The local stock market managed to eke out a small gain as investors picked up some bargains while remaining wary of rising COVID cases.

The main index inched up 9.91 points or 0.15 percent to close at 6,766.83 with only the Property sector in the red.

Volume jumped to 5.9 billion shares worth P19.02 billion as losers still beat gainers 131 to 83 with 48 unchanged.

“Philippine shares closed slightly up as a number of events kept investors on the sidelines,” said Regina Capital Development Corporation Managing Director Luis Limlingan.

He said investors are still digesting the news after the US Senate passed a $1.9tn COVID-19 relief package as Phivolcs raised the alert level status of Taal Volcano from level 1 (low level of unrest) to level 2 (increasing unrest).

“In addition, for the fourth day in a row, new COVID-19 patients topped 3,000, as the country reported spikes in cases in several areas, especially within Metro Manila,” Limlingan noted.

Philstocks Financial Senior Analyst Japhet Tantiangco said “Bargain hunting lifted the local market which had struggled to close in the green territory as COVID-19 concerns continued to weigh on investor sentiment.”