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Bacolod City, Philippines Saturday, February 24, 2018
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Peso ends week strong;
PSEi slips anew

MANILA - The Philippine peso ended the week strong against the US dollar unlike the Philippine Stock Exchange index which fell for the third consecutive day due to risk-off sentiment.

The local unit finished the week at 51.89 to a dollar from the previous day's 52.10, which a trader pointed to decline in US Treasury yields.

Trading is also light because investors are still mulling about the details of the minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee meeting last January, which pointed to more rate hikes for the year, the trader said.

Market players and economists project three rate hikes this year as monetary officials continue to be optimistic on the rise of US' inflation rate to within the Fed's target of 2 percent.

For the day, the local unit opened at 52.00, better than its 52.13 start a day ago.

It improved mid-trade to 51.82 but also slipped to 52.05, resulting in an average of 51.89.

Volume for the day reached USD656.3 million, lower than the USD668.4 million a day ago.

Next week, the currency pair is seen to trade between 51.80 and 52.20.

On the other hand, PSEi fell 0.56 percent, or 48.01 points, to 8,467.56 points, which a trader said was counter to the performance of its peers in the region.

A trader said investors continued to be worried by the developments overseas, which is a factor for any movement in rates, particularly in the US.

The broader All Shares tracked the main index and declined 0.47 percent, or 23.63 points, to 5,063.56 points.

Most of the sectors also ended on the red, led by the Financials, which fell 1.11 percent; followed by the Property, 0.95 percent; Industrial, 0.83 percent; Services, 0.09 percent; and Holding Firms, 0.02 percent.

Only the Mining and Oil finished with gains after rising 1.15 percent.

Volume for the day reached 3.26 billion shares, amounting to P9.2 billion.

Losers continue to surpass gainers at 122 to 91, while 39 shares were unchanged.*PNA


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