PSEi up for 7th day in a row

by Coco Alcuaz, ANC

Posted at Jan 23 2014 06:59 PM | Updated as of Jan 24 2014 02:59 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Philippine stocks rose for a seventh day led by banks, with Philippine National Bank the latest lender to get a recommendation.

The PSE index rose half a percent to 6,170.05.

The financial index gained 1.5%. Leading banks were BDO, PNB and Security Bank. PNB rose 2.4% to P85, as UBS recommended a buy with a target price of P105. BDO and Security Bank got recommendations from JPMorgan earlier in the week.

The gains in banking stocks may be a surprise after many analysts said banks would be weak this year, as rising interest rates dampen trading gains and borrowing.

Also gaining today, three tycoon stocks - Lucio Tan's LT Group (P18, +5.3%), John Gokongwei's JG Summit (P41.50, +3.9%) and Andrew Tan's AGI (P27, +2.9%).

Manuel Pangilinan-led Meralco rose 1.3%, despite the beating its president Oscar Reyes got from Senator Antonio Trillanes at the Senate hearing on its controversial rate hike.

Trillanes said Meralco could get nationalized, the way it was taken over during Martial Law, if it doesn't get a conscience.

But Philex Mining, also led by Pangilinan, fell 0.9% to P9.72 after getting an underperform rating from Standard Chartered with a P10.80 target price.

PLDT was unchanged as it announced SEC approval for a plan to raise P10-P15 billion in its first ever retail bonds.

Meanwhile, at the foreign exchange market, the peso weakened by 10 centavos, closing at P45.30 against the greenback.