STOCKS opened the month flat ahead of the release of key economic data and more second quarter results of listed firms.

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) fell by 3.90 points or 0.06% to close at 6,312.03 on Monday, while the broader all shares index dropped 5.90 points or 0.17% to 3,392.92.

“The market had a seesaw session today as investors await the next important catalyst: second quarter earnings,” AB Capital Securities, Inc. Vice President Jovis Vistan said in a Viber Message on Monday.

“Philippine investors welcomed the month of with a flat start as several economic data releases scheduled for this week,” Regina Capital Development Corp. Head of Sales Luis A. Limlingan said in a Viber message.

“The most awaited economic data this week back home is the Philippines’ CPI (consumer price index) data for July, as well as the PSEi rebalancing, both on Friday,” Mr. Limlingan said.

The market will also look at other reports to be released this week, including the June trade balance data and July unemployment numbers, he said.

“Aside from these, a handful of speaking engagements from the Fed (US Federal Reserve) are also expected to be monitored by investors this week,” Mr. Limlingan added.

A BusinessWorld poll of 14 analysts yielded a median estimate of 6.2% for July headline inflation, within the 5.6-6.4% forecast of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

If realized, this would be faster than the 6.1% print seen in June and the 3.7% in July 2021 and would exceed the BSP’s 2-4% target band for the fourth straight month. It would also be the highest in 45 months or nearly four years since the 6.9% in October 2018.

Sectoral indices ended split on Monday. Financials went down by 49.99 points or 3.26% to 1,482.39; services declined by 33.92 points or 2.02% to 1,640.33; and mining and oil decreased by 34.63 points or 0.30% to 11,407.98.

Meanwhile, holding firms increased by 80.68 points or 1.35% to 6,015.41; property rose by 29.91 points or 1.05% to 2,862.12; and industrials added 88.09 points or 0.95% to end at 9,350.5.

Decliners beat advancers, 92 versus 85, while 55 names closed unchanged.

Value turnover climbed to P5.13 billion on Monday with 96.95 million shares changing hands from the P18.05 billion with 566.04 million issues seen on Friday.

Foreigners turned sellers anew, recording P288.4 million in net sales on Monday from the P1.97 billion in net purchases seen on Friday.

AB Capital Securities’ Mr. Vistan placed PSEi’s support at 6,200 and resistance at its 50-day average of 6,400, while Regina Capital’s Mr. Limlingan put the PSEi’s support at 6,200 and resistance at 6,380.