SE Asia Stocks-Philippine near 9-month high on earnings hopes

Mon Apr 21, 2014 7:06am EDT

HANOI, April 21 (Reuters) - Philippine shares closed near a
nine-month high on expectations of good corporate earnings and
the government's revised infrastructure spending plan while most
other Southeast Asian stock markets edged up on Monday.
    The Philippines benchmark SE Composite Index 
surpassed its 6680-point critical resistance level, bolstered by
positioning from both foreign and local institutions ahead of
first-quarter corporate earnings, said Manny Cruz, a market
strategist at Asiasec Equities.
    "Indications reveal that earnings may surpass the 7-percent
consensus estimate for earnings in all sectors... A lot of
companies may be posting significant growth this year," Manny
said.
    Appetite was also boosted by a recent revised infrastructure
plan by the Philippine government, under which it raised its
target for poverty incidence by 2016 to a more realistic level.
    "The government would like to be more aggressive over the
next two years to pump-prime the economy in terms of
infrastructure spending," Manny added.
    Philippine shares jumped 1.44 percent to end at 6767.51
points, the highest level since July 25, 2013, led by telecom
firm Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co which rose
3.57 percent. Thursday's gains lifted the index to make it
Southeast Asia's best performer so far this year, Reuters data
showed.
    Stocks in Malaysia and Singapore also
inched up despite thin trade, and Bangkok's SET Index 
marked a fourth straight gain to close at a fresh five-month
high.
    But shares in Indonesia drifted lower by 0.1 percent
and Vietnam's benchmark VN Index was near a 10-week low
as investors cut losses on expectations of further declines.
 
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SOUTHEAST ASIAN STOCK MARKETS
 Change on day
 Market             Current     Prev Close    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   421.26        421.13       +0.03
 Singapore          3255.83       3253.80       +0.06
 Kuala Lumpur       1862.93       1852.69       +0.55
 Bangkok            1413.07       1409.18       +0.28
 Jakarta            4892.29       4897.05       -0.10
 Manila             6767.51       6671.18       +1.44
 Ho Chi Minh         558.14        565.33       -1.27
 Change on year 
 Market             Current       End 2013    Pct Move
 TR SE Asia Index*   421.26        388.37       +8.47
 Singapore          3255.83       3167.43       +2.79
 Kuala Lumpur       1862.93       1866.96       -0.22
 Bangkok            1413.07       1298.71       +8.81
 Jakarta            4892.29       4274.18      +14.46
 Manila             6767.51       5889.83      +14.90
 Ho Chi Minh         558.14        504.63      +10.60
 * The Thomson Reuters South East Asia Index is a
highly representative indicator of stocks listed in Indonesia,
Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

 (Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Anupama Dwivedi)