‘Dead’ Holy Week for financial markets?

Rappler.com

MANILA, Philippines – This week is considered a “dead period” for the stock market, with most financial market players more focused on their vacations than on making quick bucks.  

Financial markets in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan are closed on Wednesday, April 4, for a public holiday.

Trading there will resume on Thursday, April 5. On the same day, Philippine financial markets will be closed as the country observes Holy Week.

The Philippines is a predominantly Roman Catholic country, and April 5 marks one of the longest religious holiday weekends.

Maundy Thursday, a non-working holiday, kicks off the long break, which traditionally ends on Easter Sunday, April 8.

This year, financial markets are close up to April 9, another national holiday (Day of Valor).

Most retail businesses will cut their working hours from April 5 to Black Saturday on April 7, with most Filipinos bound for beach and mountain resorts.

Most analysts say trading will be “sideways,” with most players already secure with their positions.

So far, the biggest business deal reported was the long-awaited one between San Miguel Corp and Philippine Airlines, which apparently did not push through last April 3.
 
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Noel Reyes, writing for Interaksyon.com, wrote: “Based on the data for the past 23 years, the Holy Week effect would be: the market tends to rise during the Holy Week, doing so for 17 years out of the 23 years (probability of 74%), and tends to rise less in the post-Holy Week period, going on an uptick in only 13 years (probability of 57%).

“With this market inefficiency, the logical thing to do would have been to buy the week before the Holy Week and sell during the Holy Week to take advantage of the market uptrend; then buy back after the Holy Week to take advantage of any pullback,” he said. – Rappler.com