Philippine stocks suffer worst nosedive since global financial crisis

MANILA, Philippines – The spread of the novel coronavirus pushed Philippine shares off a cliff, suffering their steepest one-day percentage drop since the 2008 global financial crisis.

On Monday, March 9, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) plunged 6.8% and closed at 6,312.61. This is also the biggest one-day point drop since August 2015 and the lowest close since January 2016.

"The main culprit for the major sell-off is the mounting COVID-19 infections in the Philippines.... Worries have escalated on the negative economic impact of the epidemic from tourism, to foreign trade and investments, to supply chains, to possible work suspensions, to consumption, and ultimately, to the laborers who will be the No. 1 victims once the spread worsens," said Japhet Tantiangco of Philstocks.

A total of 204 companies suffered losses on Monday, while only 30 companies advanced and 23 remained unchanged.

The most actively traded stocks were in the red. Ayala Land (down 4.7%), Ayala Corporation (down 6.4%), SM Prime (down 6.4%), BDO (down 7.4%), and SM Investments (down 4.3%) all lost value on the first trading day of the week.

The government's economic team has already projected that they are likely to miss their economic growth target in 2020 due to the virus. – Rappler.com

Ralf Rivas

A sociologist by heart, a journalist by profession. Ralf is Rappler's business reporter, covering macroeconomy, government finance, companies, and agriculture.

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