• BSP sees June inflation settling at 1.1% – 2%

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    THE central bank sees headline inflation in June settling within its target range of between 1.1 percent and 2 percent given the lower local pump prices of petroleum and power rates.

    Official inflation data will be released by the Philippine Statistics Authority on July 7.

    “June inflation is seen to remain low and settle within 1.1 percent to 2 percent range,” Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said in a text message to reporters on Friday.

    Tetangco noted that lower diesel, kerosene, and liquefied petroleum gas prices and the decline in Meralco electricity rates provided downside inflation pressures for the month.

    Earlier in the week, oil firms implemented a minimal rollback in the prices of petroleum products, ranging from 10 centavos to 25 centavos per liter.

    Meralco also cut its generation charge by 84 centavos per kilowatt-hour (kWh) in June, which means that a typical household consuming 200 kWh will see a reduction of almost P168 in its bill for June.

    Prices of rice, gasoline, tuition higher.

    Offsetting the downside inflation pressures for the month were the slightly higher prices of rice and gasoline and tuition in June, Tetangco said.

    Before the start of school year 2015-2016, the Commission on Higher Education approved the application of 313 private colleges and universities for an increase in tuition and other school fees.

    The average tuition fee hike was reportedly P29.86 per unit while the average increase for school fees was P135.60.

    On the other hand, the Department of Education also allowed more than 1,000 private schools nationwide to increase tuition and other school fees for school year 2015-2016.

    “Moving forward, the BSP will remain watchful of developments in price pressures and stands ready to undertake policy action to help ensure price and financial stability,” Tetangco said.

    In May, headline inflation hit its slowest pace in two decades at 1.6 percent, slower than the 2.2 percent in April and 4.5 percent in the year-earlier period. It was also the slowest rise since 1998.

    For full-year 2015, the central bank expects headline inflation to average at 2.1 percent, before picking up pace in 2016 at 2.5 percent.

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