Ides of March: Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi) Bloodbath

Ides of March (March 15, 2021): The Philippine Stock Exchange Index (PSEi) closed on March 15 (the Ides of March) at 6,552, shedding 177 points or 2.6% from the March 12 closing of 6,729. It fell as much as 3.6% during the day but managed to pare the losses as some investors started bargain-hunting.

All 30 components of the index were in the red except Aboitiz Power Corporation, which gained P0.65 per share or 2.6% at the back of the cash dividend ex-date the following day (March 16).

PSEi, table
PSEi Performance, March 15, 2021 (Source: PSE Website)

All sectors were in the red, led by the Mining and Oil sector which declined 3.66%.

The sell down came amid the surge in COVID-19 cases in the Philippines, the second-highest infection count in Southeast Asia after Indonesia. The country is also one of the region’s last to begin the inoculations, citing constraints in the availability of vaccines.

As mentioned in last week’s blog, “when the index breaks below the 6,750 support, it would indicate that downside momentum is likely to continue or may even become stronger as traders reduce their holdings in anticipation of further slide in prices. In this scenario, the index could retest the support of 6,612 formed during the sell-down last January 29.”

Both the 6,750 and 6,612 support levels have been breached all in one day.

The next support comes at 6,445, the 200-day moving average. Should this be breached as well, investors may expect the index to test the succeeding support levels at 6,234 and 5,900.

Related: Philippine Stock Market Outlook: Beware the Ides of March