How to Invest in Stocks in the Philippines

The Philippines are a growing economy with a long history of American involvement. The Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) is relatively small for the region, but for investors interested in the fascinating Southeast Asian market, it's full of potential opportunities. While other investors chase volatile opportunities in the Asian countries that dominate the headlines, savvy foreign investors can find impressive opportunities on the PSE if they conduct their research.

Learn more about the Philippines and its history. The major industries are currently tourism, agriculture, mining, back-office service outsourcing and manufacturing. It's a surprisingly diverse mix of industries, and it has been growing rapidly relative to the past several decades.

Contact a Filipino broker. You can only trade on the PSE the old-fashioned way--by sending in telephone orders to your broker. The PSE does not offer online order execution, as it is forbidden by law. Luckily, you can at least track stocks on the exchange through the Internet.

Open a foreign investment account in the Philippines and fill out your Reference Card and submit your identification papers for registration. Your Filipino brokerage firm should have copies of the documents and will ask you to complete them before completing your account creation. After you've filled in your card--which will just ask for your basic identity information--and submitted copies of your papers, you will be ready to trade.

Consider investing in Filipino stocks listed on foreign exchanges for greater convenience. For example, companies like
Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PHI) are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Hedge your investments in a less volatile and more established market. The PSE has been known to gyrate wildly relative to more stable global economies. It can help to know Filipino to stay abreast of the local business news if you plan to invest there.