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Monday, December 29, 2014

Philippine share prices seen playing catch up to ascent of markets overseas

Philippine share prices may close the year above the 7,200 level on window dressing and following Wall Street’s record performance last week.

The local bourse may play catch up to overseas markets after a three-day break due to the Christmas holidays, said Astro del Castillo, managing director at First Grade Finance Inc.

Last Friday, US benchmark indices continued their ascent to uncharted territory, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising 23 points, or 0.1 percent, to 18,053, its 38th record close of the year, and the Standard & Poor's 500 adding 6.89 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,088.70, its 52nd record close.

"We can see a bit more upside. Resistance is at 7,200 and we expect the market to hit that. There may be a bit of profit-taking on some of the blue chips that have gone up and we can see a resumption of the run on January 5," said Alexander Adrian Tiu of AB Capital Securities Inc.

The bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) finishing above the 7,200 line translates to a gain of more than 22 percent this year compared to its flat finish in 2013. The PSEi rose 0.85 percent to end the holiday-shortened week at 7,186.32.

Low trading volumes may also be seen because of the lack of players and funds wanting to preserve their returns, said Luis Limlingan, business development head at Regina Capital Development Corp.

"Trading will be much slower unless there’s some surprising economic news or newsworthy event that will shock the market in either direction. It may swing a bit upward on window dressing," Limlingan added.

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