Most expensive stocks in the Philippine Stock Exchange

James Ryan Jonas

Stock investing is only for the rich?

Nope, not true. We have already debunked this notion before, in several of our past articles that dealt with how much money a person actually needs to start investing in the stock market.

In our tutorial post How to use the PSE Board Lot Table, we explained how much money is needed to start buying stocks in the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).

Actually with just a few thousand pesos (even less than P5,000), one can already purchase shares of a PSE-traded company.

Minimum Amount to Open Stockbroker Account

The problem, though, is that to be able to trade stocks, one needs to open an account with a stock broker. Previously, the minimum amount needed to sign up for a broker’s account is P100,000 or even P1 million. That’s huge. Fortunately, in recent years we have seen brokers lowering their account opening capital requirement in their bid to motivate Filipinos to start trading online.

In our post Comparison of Online Stock Brokers in the Philippines, we have seen that some online brokers now require a smaller capital. The lowest we have seen so far is P5,000 to open a stock trading account.

Local Small Investors Program

Even initial public offerings (IPO) that have been traditionally limited to institutional investors and high net worth individuals have been re-designed to cater to retail investors. Thanks to the PSE’s Local Small Investors (LSI) Program, an investor with just P25,000 can now participate in an IPO.

We thus have seen that it doesn’t really require a lot of capital to start investing in stocks. The only question that remains now is: Can you actually afford the stocks that you want to buy?

This is a concern because some stocks traded in the Philippines may not be that cheap for small-time investors. The minimum amount of shares that can be bought and sold is determined by the PSE Board Lot table.

Depending on a stock’s current price, the minimum transaction volume can just be 5 shares (for stocks priced at least P1,000) or 1 million shares (for stocks priced between P0.0001 and P0.0099).

We identified below the 20 most expensive Philippine stocks, ranked based on their closing prices as of June 19, 2014. We also display below the minimum cash amount you need to be able to trade the minimum volume for that stock, as prescribed by the PSE Board Lot table.

Most Expensive PSE-Traded Stocks

CompanyStock CodeClosing Price (in PHP), as of June 19, 2014Min. Volume to Trade (Board Lot)Cost per Min. Board Lot
1PLDTTEL2,844.005 14,220.00
2Globe TelecomGLO1,645.005 8,225.00
3Sun Life FinancialSLF1,410.005 7,050.00
4DMCI Holdings PreferredDMCP1,400.005 7,000.00
5Far Eastern UniversityFEU1,105.005 5,525.00
6San Miguel Purefods PreferredPFP1,010.005 5,050.00
7Allied Banking Corp. PreferredABC850.0010 8,500.00
8GT Capital HoldingsGTCAP840.0010 8,400.00
9SM Investments Corp.SM785.0010 7,850.00
10Manulife Financial Corp.MFC750.0010 7,500.00
11Ayala Corp.AC635.0010 6,350.00
12BHI HoldingsBH550.0010 5,500.00
13Ayala Corp. Preferred 'A'ACPA500.0010 5,000.00
14Ayala Corp. Preferred 'B'ACPB500.0010 5,000.00
15Semirara Mining Corp.SCC375.0010 3,750.00
16Phil. Stock Exchange Inc.PSE282.0010 2,820.00
17Manila Electric Co.MER253.0010 2,530.00
18San Miguel Purefods Co.PF230.0010 2,300.00
19Synery Grid & Dev't Phils.SGP178.0010 1,780.00
20Jollibee Foods Corp.JFC174.4010 1,744.00

In the table below, we can see that six stocks are priced more than P1,000 each, with one stock — PLDT (stock code: TEL) — priced the highest at P2,844. Around 25 more stocks have prices ranging from P100 to just below P1,000.

To be able to trade these stocks, one has to shell out between P1,744 (to buy JFC shares) to P14,220 (to buy PLDT shares), as per the minimum board lot.

In case you are wondering, no, high prices are not directly associated with a blue chip stock or a well-managed company. So don’t think that an expensive stock is always a good buy.

Similarly, a cheap stock does not normally mean it’s a loser company or a badly-managed one. The firm might have conducted stock splits previously or the IPO offer was priced low which explains why the stock is trading at relatively cheap prices.

In the end, when making a decision to buy a stock, don’t look at its price alone. What is more important is the future prospect of the company, and whether its potential growth and upcoming cash flow are worth investing in right now given the stock’s current price.

For more awesome educational posts, click the links below!

James Ryan Jonas teaches business management, investments, and entrepreneurship at the University of the Philippines (UP). He is also the Executive Director of UP Provident Fund Inc., managing and investing P3.2 Billion ($56.4 Million) worth of retirement funds on behalf of thousands of UP employees.