Profit takers pulled down the Philippine stock market on Monday but the overall sentiments remain upbeat.
The bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index lost 0.19 percent or 12.04 points to 6,296.32, while the broader all-share index bucked the trend by gaining another 0.19 percent or 12.04 points to 3,804.05.
Trading volume reached 3.59 billion shares worth 10.19 billion pesos (228.34 million U.S. dollars) with 82 stocks advancing, 73 declining, and 57 unchanged.
The local equities last week posted its best weekly return for the year with investors focused on corporate numbers as the earnings season gets underway.
"The composite index benefited from investor excitement on corporate earnings reports. However, while we acknowledge that this may continue to boost the market in the coming days, we believe this may not be enough to continuously push the market up, given the economic turmoils in the U.S. and other Asian neighbors, " Joyce Anne Ramos of AB Capital Securities, Inc. said in her daily stock market comment.
The recently released Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting minutes noted that the U.S. Federal Reserve has been considering the possibility of increasing key interest rates. The issue has been raised when some Fed officials mentioned that if their current inflation would persistently remain below 2 percent, it may pose risks to their economic performance.
"Despite the concerns regarding the economic stability of the neighboring counties, local trading remained strong, driven by positive macroeconomics news, indicating a continuously improving fundamentals of the Philippines," Ramos said.
Ramos further added that positive earnings performance continue to fuel this week's rally, thus sparking optimism for more favorable releases in the coming days.
Stocks in the 30-company index closed mixed. Among those picked up were Megaworld Corp., SM Prime Holdings, Inc,. and heavyweight Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co