Free Tour of the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE)

James Ryan Jonas

Just before the Holy Week holiday, we went to the Tektite Tower in Ortigas to have a tour of the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).

It surely was exciting to actually visit one of the country’s stock trading floors but, at the same time, disappointing because we did not see a lot of “action.”

stock-trading-board-pricesOur gracious guide explained that most trades are now conducted online, which means traders don’t anymore have to shout orders on the floor. Traders merely input an order on their terminals and then just wait for it to be processed.

We also asked why there seemed to be a lot of unoccupied brokers’ tables on the floor. Apparently, those used to be for trading companies that already closed down or for companies who have their own terminals in the office, which means they don’t have to be in the PSE trading floor anymore.

PSE History

Our guide also walked us through the history of the Philippine Stock Exchange. Did you know that the PSE was actually a result of the merger of the Manila Stock Exchange and the Makati Stock Exchange back in the ’90s?

The Tektite office houses what used to be the Manila Stock Exchange and Tower One in Ayala houses the Makati Stock Exchange. The Makati trading floor is much bigger and has twice more licensed brokers than the Tektite floor.

Which trading venue do presidents like Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo visit to ring the bell to signal the start of trading?

The answer: the Makati exchange, because it has stricter security than the one in Tektite.

PSE Stock trading rules

We also got learn more about stock trading rules and conventions in the Philippines.

Are you aware that publicly-listed companies are required to disclose to the PSE any material event or issue within 10 minutes of occurrence? If the CEO of your listed firm dies, for instance, you call the PSE first before the spouse! Otherwise, the company will be fined or might even be delisted.

All in all, the PSE tour was good because we got to see things we only discuss in classrooms. But the best part for me was to actually see the price of one of my stocks increase by 7% right there on the board at the center of the trading floor! That alone was definitely rewarding.

If you are trading stocks, try to visit the PSE sometime!

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.