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Bacolod City, Philippines Saturday, January 12, 2019
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Peso higher, PSEi slides
as trading week ends


MANILA - The peso ended higher yesterday despite the drop in the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) due to jitters created by Korean shipbuilder Hanjin Heavy Industries and Construction Philippines declaration of bankruptcy.

The local currency ended the week at 52.14 from 52.225 Thursday, which a trader attributed to investors’ appetite remaining up given news from the US saying that Federal Reserve officials will continue to monitor developments and will remain cautious on their rate hike decisions.

For the day, the peso opened at 52.28 weaker than the 52.2 a day ago.

Its closing level is the unit’s strongest for the day but weakest stood at 52.32 due to concerns about the possible impact of Hanjin's bankruptcy on some Philippine banks given their exposure to the Korean company.

The five major banks that have a total of USD412 million exposure to Hanjin Heavy Industries are state-owned Land Bank of the Philippines, Yuchengco-led Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC), Ty-led Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company (Metrobank), Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI), and Sy-led Banco de Oro Unibank (BDO).

PSEi, meanwhile, shed 1.02 percent, or 81.14 points, to 7,904.09 points, which Regina Capital managing director Luis Limlingan pointed to investors decision to withdraw some of their holders, given concerns on the Hanjin issues and the continued shutdown of the US government.

PSEi’s drop was mirrored by most of the other gauges, with the All Shares down by 0.73 percent, or 34.76 points, to 4,730.15 points.

Financials registered the highest drop at 2.54 percent, followed by the Property, 1.16 percent; Holding Firms, 0.59 percent; Mining and Oil, 0.54 percent; and Services, 0.19 percent.

Only the Industrial index ended the week with gains after it rose 0.10 percent.

Volume reached 5.49 billion, amounting to P8.5 billion.

Losers led gainers at 125 to 79, while 37 shares were unchanged.*PNA


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