PSE: Online stock accounts grew during pandemic

Published June 2, 2021, 4:17 PM

by James A. Loyola

The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) reported that growth of online stock market accounts continued to outpace its traditional counterpart for the third consecutive year.

Online accounts now have the lion’s share of 67.0 percent of total stock market accounts in 2020 after increasing by 19.7 percent to 936,200 while non-online accounts went up by 3.3 percent to 460,553.

In the previous year, online accounts comprised 782,118 or 64 percent of total stock market accounts while non-online accounts were at 445,920.

“The preference for opening online accounts continues to rise since technology has made investing more accessible to investors. At the PSE, we also continue to enhance and develop online services that will benefit the investing public,” said PSE President and CEO Ramon S. Monzon.

Year-on-year, stock market accounts grew by 13.7 percent to 1,396,753 from 1,228,038 in 2019.

Retail investors held most of the accounts at 1,366,855 or 97.9 percent of total stock market accounts while institutional investors owned 2.1 percent or 29,898 accounts.

Meantime, local investors made up for 1,375,520 or 98.5 percent of total stock market accounts compared with 21,233 accounts of foreign investors.

“We noted that there was a 35.6 percent increase in the number of active accounts last year. The pandemic prompted retail investors to actively participate in the stock market,” Monzon explained.

In 2020, average daily number of trades rose by 33.7 percent while retail participation surged by 47.8 percent year-on-year.

Based on the 2020 Stock Market Investor Profile (SMIP) Report on retail investors of the PSE, the difference in the number of accounts owned by male and female investors remain at less than one percent with the former comprising 50.8 percent of stock market accounts while the latter is at 49.2 percent.

In terms of age, investors in the 30 to 44 age group held 45.6 percent of stock market accounts. They are followed by investors aged 18 to 29 at 22.5 percent, then those in the age groups of 45 to 59 and 60 and above at 19.8 percent and 12.1 percent respectively.

Retail investors earning less than P500,000 annually made up 61.2 percent of stock market account holders while 21.6 percent of retail accounts were owned by those with an annual income of P500,000 to P1 million. Investors whose annual income is above P1 million comprised 17.2 percent of retail investors.

Domestic investors had a 98.3 percent share of stock market accounts while investors based overseas held the remaining 1.7 percent of shares.

The biggest number of domestic investors were based in Metro Manila at 75.7 percent, followed by Luzon at 13.5 percent then Visayas at 5.7 percent and finally, Mindanao at 3.4 percent.

The top five nationalities of foreign investors were Chinese, Japanese, American, British and Korean.

“The REIT listings we’ve had attracted a good number of retail investors, particularly Local Small Investors who use PSE EASy for their initial public offering subscriptions. We expect the upcoming IPOs and REIT listings to continue to support the growth in retail investors,” Monzon added.