February 6, 2019 / 3:42 AM / 8 months ago

SE Asia Stocks-Philippines jumps as slowing inflation supports views of steady rates

    * Philippines hits highest since mid-March
    * Indonesia Q4 GDP data expected later in day

    By Shreya Mariam Job
    Feb 6 (Reuters) - Philippine shares jumped 1.7 percent on
Wednesday to their highest level in more than 10-1/2 months, as
slower January inflation supported views that the central bank
would keep interest rates steady for a second straight meeting
on Thursday.
    Data released on Tuesday showed Philippine inflation eased
to its slowest annual pace in 10 months in January on lower
food, transport and utility costs.
    The consumer price index rose 4.4 percent from a year
earlier, slightly below the 4.5 percent median forecast in a
Reuters poll. It was also the third straight month that
inflation has slowed. 
    Cooling inflation gives the central bank "more space" to
review its monetary policy, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Deputy
Governor Diwa Guinigundo said, after a rigorous tightening cycle
in the previous year with five straight hikes of a total of 175
basis points.
    Industrials and financials pushed the benchmark stock index
 to its highest since March 19, with SM Investments Corp
 and SM Prime Holdings Inc strengthening 2.1
percent and 2.6 percent, respectively.
    The Philippine market was closed on Tuesday for the Lunar
New Year holiday.     
    Among other Southeast Asian stock markets, Indonesia
climbed 0.8 percent, recouping from the previous session's sharp
fall, ahead of the release of fourth-quarter GDP data later in
the day. 
    Indonesia's economic growth rate likely slowed slightly in
the final quarter of 2018, but the full-year pace was probably
the best in five years, a Reuters poll showed.
    The poll predicted an expansion of 5.11 percent in
October-December, fractionally less than the third quarter's
5.17 percent annual rate. 
    Telecom and material stocks were the biggest boosts with
Telekomunikasi Indonesia (Persero) Tbk Perusahaan Perseroan PT
 firming 1.6 percent and Unilever Indonesia Tbk PT
 strengthening 1.9 percent. 
    Malaysia, Vietnam and Singapore
markets were closed for the Lunar New Year.
For Asian Companies click;  

 Change on the day                                
 Market                 Current   Previous close  Pct Move
 Bangkok                1659.54   1653.09         0.39
 Manila                 8202.97   8069.48         1.65
 Jakarta                6535.915  6481.451        0.84
 Change so far in 2019                            
 Market                 Current   End 2018        Pct Move
 Bangkok                1659.54   1563.88         6.12
 Manila                 8202.97   7,466.02        9.87
 Jakarta                6535.915  6,194.50        5.51

 (Reporting by Shreya Mariam Job in Bengaluru; Editing by
Subhranshu Sahu)
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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