THE stock market firmed up on Friday as investors hunted for bargain issues ahead of earnings season.
The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) rose 0.66 percent or 48.60 points to close at 7,399.18 while the broader All Shares gained 0.44 percent or 19.69 points to finish at 4,474.89.
“I guess market players are optimistic about the second quarter earnings reports from blue chip stocks,” Timson Securities, Inc. equity trader Jervin de Celis said.
“While the prices are trading relatively lower than the previous quarter, they’re taking this chance to hunt for bargains,” he added.
Papa Securities Corp. trader Gio Perez, meanwhile, said the local market mimicked its US counterpart, which gained overnight on expectations of a 20-percent jump in second-quarter earnings.
Wall Street’s three main indices were all in green territory—the Dow Jones was up 0.91 percent, S&P 500 advanced 0.87 percent, and Nasdaq surged 1.39 percent.
Regional markets were also firmer except Shanghai, which fell by 0.23 percent.
“The weak net foreign selling (NFS) figure, the lowest level for the week, may have also contributed to the index’s gain today,” Perez noted.
Foreign funds bought P2.69 billion issues and sold P2.73 billion for an NFS position of P37.8 million.
Among the sectoral indices, only services slipped — by 0.08 percent.
More than 1.49 billion issues valued at P5.45 billion were traded.
Winners led losers, 103 to 91, while 46 issues were unchanged.