THE ascension to the presidency of Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III this week failed to cheer the stock market as share prices dipped at the trading’s close Friday.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) dropped for the second time in a row to settle at 3,290.28 or 0.73 percent lower than 3.315.26 points last Thursday.

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The broader all shares index also posted losses after it dipped by 0.88 percent or 18.71 points to 2,096.89.

Trading volume and value also slackened, with 1.43 billion shares worth P2.64 billion changing hands, from 3.383 billion shares worth P3.04 billion on Thursday.

Decliners led advancers 86 to 20 while 66 stocks were unchanged, reflective of the decelerating global economic growth especially in Europe, which is now suffering from a debt crisis.

Sub-indices also tumbled on Friday with mining and oil dropping by 1.7 percent or 151.28 points to 8,756.39, followed by financial companies that slipped by 0.98 percent or 46.11 points to 5,116.99.

The property sector continued to be in the red after dropping 0.94 percent or 11.16 points to 1,176.82, while industrial firms retreated by 0.89 percent or 46.11 points to 5,116.99.

Holding companies slipped by 0.87 percent or 19.60 points to 2,228.92, while the services sector had the smallest decline of 0.12 percent or 1.69 points to 1,443.50.

Among listed companies, Aboitiz Power Corp., Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., SM Prime Holdings Inc., DMCI Holdings Inc., International Container Terminal Services Inc. and First Gen Corp. led the roster of decliners.

Friday’s most active stock Aboitiz, for instance, declined by 1.37 percent to close at P18 apiece from P18.25 last Thursday.

Meanwhile, blue-chip Philippine Long Distance Telephone Co. (PLDT), Megaworld Corporation and SM Investments Corp. ended the week on a green mark.

Asian markets decline

But aside from the Philippines, most Asian markets retreated as investors remained cautious of the latest US jobs market due for release late Friday (Saturday in Manila).

Reports said the June jobs report would yield discouraging figures, as reflected in Thursday’s gloomy mood in Wall Street.

US economists forecast that employers cut a net total of 110,000 jobs last month, fueling speculations that the economic recovery may not be too soon as expected.

Dow Jones industrials recorded its lowest close in eight months after dropping 0.4 percent, to 9,732.53.

The broader S&P 500 index settled 0.3 percent lower to 1,027.37, and the Nasdaq composite index fell 0.4 percent, to 2,101.36.

As a result, South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.4 percent to 1,679.02 while Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average inched 0.1 percent higher at 9,196.42 after heavy trading this week.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 1.4 percent to finish the week at 19,851.42 while the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 1 percent at 2,350.24. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)