Aquino rings in PSE celebrations

Chris Schnabel
Aquino rings in PSE celebrations
(UPDATED) PSEi trading has doubled during President Aquino’s tenure, reaching a new record of 8,127.48

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – President Benigno Aquino III, joined by members of his Cabinet and selected heads of listed firms, led the bell-ringing ceremony that signalled the opening of the market for trading at the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) in Makati City Tuesday, April 14.

The ceremony was held to celebrate the recent string of successes of the PSE Index (PSEi) since the beginning of the year, culminating in its closing past the 8000 mark in recent weeks.

In his speech, Aquino reminisced about the first time he rang the bell at the exchange, in September 2010, shortly after becoming president. “I distinctly remember the first time I rang the bell at the stock exchange, back then the PSEi was on the cusp of reaching the 4000 level. Now looking back, I cannot help but times have changed for the better,” the President said.

“In almost 5 years we have seen the PSEi go from record high to record high, topping 119 records in total with the index breaching the 5000, 6000, 7000, and now 8000 mark,” he added. 

The index broke past the 8,000 level on March 30, reaching an intraday high of 8,007.98. It closed above the 8,000 mark for the first time on April 6.

Since then, the index has extended its upward trajectory to finish at an all-time record of 8,127.48 on April 10. This record finish was the 27th time that the PSEi closed at an all-time high since the start of the year.

The latest milestone also brought the market’s year-to-date gain to 12.4%.

Trading at the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) was up 40.4% in the first 3 months of 2015, driven by robust market participation by both foreign and local investors. (READ: Where do we go from here?)

Brisk trading activity

In his welcome remarks during the event, PSE Chairman Jose T. Pardo said, at 8,000 point level, PSEi is giving returns in 2015 alone of already more than 10%.

“It is interesting to note that the unprecedented ascent to 8,000 comes with other remarkable market indicators,” Pardo said.

Pardo pointed out the brisk trading activity in the first quarter of 2015 which soared by 40% from the same period a year ago.

In the first 2 months of the year, total market capitalization of listed firms rose by 18% to P14.98 trillion ($336.01 billion) from the same period in 2014.

Foreign funds registered a net buying of P48.87 billion ($1.10 billion) in the January-March period, a 182% increase year-on-year. There was also an increase in local investor participation as they accounted for 53% of trading activity in the first quarter of 2015.

“This can only mean one thing, confidence in the economy under your leadership, Mr. President,” Pardo stated.

“Investors are really keen on being part of the Philippine growth story. We hope that upbeat corporate earnings and optimism over the local economy will continue to attract investors to our market,” said PSE president Hans B. Sicat previously said.

The President echoed his sentiments remarking that “no one can dispute the good news of the doubling of the PSEi which stands as a sound reminder of the optimism that continues to surround the Philippines.“ –

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