The local stock barometer fell sharply on Thursday, reversing most of the gains seen earlier this week, as investors’ recent buying conviction waned when the index neared the 6,000 barrier.

Underperforming mixed regional markets, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) tumbled by 420.45 points or 7.07 percent to close at 5,525.60.

“Most investors suddenly accepted the bitter truth: Uncertainties remain,” said Astro del Castillo, managing director at local fund management firm First Grade Finance.

The local market was battered by heavy net foreign selling amounting to P2.13 billion.

All counters tumbled, led by the property counter, which lost 8.63 percent.

The holding firm counter declined by 6.59 percent, while the industrial and services counters both slid by over 5 percent.

The financial counter lost 4.88 percent, while the mining/oil counter also declined by 3.69 percent.

Value turnover for the day amounted to P9.29 billion.

There were 153 decliners that overwhelmed 50 advancers, while 38 stocks were unchanged.

Investors dumped shares of AEV, which declined by 14.86 percent, alongside Ayala Land and ICTSI, which both fell by over 11 percent.

URC, BPI, JG Summit and GT Capital all slid by over 8 percent, while SM Prime and Metro Pacific both fell by over 7 percent.

Meralco shed 6.47 percent, while BDO lost 5.07 percent.

Ayala Corp., SM Investments, PLDT, Jollibee and Globe Telecom all declined by over 4 percent, while Puregold lost 3.71 percent.

Lenders Metrobank and Security Bank fell by 2.8 percent and 1.9 percent, respectively.

—Doris Dumlao-Abadilla

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