The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi) held steady above the 7,200 level as money rotated to US markets given strong economic prospects, an analyst said on Wednesday.

By the closing bell, the PSEi closed lower by 0.3 percent, or 21.95 points, to 7,230.15 while the broader all-shares index slid lower by 0.06 percent, or 2.7 points, to 4,453.82.

“Philippine shares took a breather as funds concentrated in the US due to strong corporate earnings and improved consumer confidence,” Luis Gerardo Limlingan, managing director at Regina Capital Development, said in a note to investors.

Limlingan said US consumer confidence in October reached 113.8, beating consensus estimates.

He added investors were also looking ahead at the release of data on durable goods orders.

Mixed results

Major regional markets in China and South Korea, meanwhile, dropped after the Australian government reported an uptick in inflation.

Subsectors ended the session mixed with industrials, financials and property ending positive while holding firms, services and mining and oil closed in the red.

A total of 746.19 million shares valued at P7.75 billion changed hands, data from the PSE showed. There were 94 advancers against 104 decliners, while 47 companies closed unchanged.

Foreigners remained net buyers on Wednesday with purchases hitting P184 million.

AC Energy was the most actively traded during the session as it closed higher by 1 percent to P12.10 per share.

It was followed by SM Prime Holdings, up 0.57 percent to P35.20; International Container Terminal Services, down 3.17 percent to P183; Bank of the Philippine Islands, up 2.35 percent to P87; and Converge ICT Solutions, up 3.13 percent to P32.95 per share.

Other actively traded names were SM Investments Corp., down 3.7 percent to P990; Jollibee Foods Corp., up 3.83 percent to P244.20; PLDT Inc., up 1.21 percent to P1,670; Ayala Corp., up 1.03 percent to P879; and BDO Unibank Inc., down 0.23 percent to P129.70 per share.

—Miguel R. Camus

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