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‘Hot money’ up 4% in first nine months


FOREIGN-portfolio investments rose 4 percent in the first nine months of the year, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said.

The high inflows, particularly in September, were owing to the positive reaction of investors to the government’s efforts to deal with the fiscal problem, the upgrade of the country’s economic growth forecast and the retention of key policy rates, the BSP said.

Armando L. Suratos, BSP officer in charge, said a net inflow of $78.3 million was seen in September.

Foreign-portfolio investments, or “hot money,” refer to investments by nonresidents in government securities, securities listed in the Philippine Stock exchange, commercial papers and peso-bank deposits funded by inwardly remitted foreign exchange. The data were based on reports of the five major custodian banks to the central bank.

Strong first-half earnings of blue chip firms and the BSP decision not to tighten monetary policy have increased net inflows in August amounting to $60.6 million despite the build-up of inflationary pressures brought about by rising prices.

In January to September this year, nonresident investments in peso-bank deposits and government securities and money-market instruments recorded net inflows of $380.1 million and $117 million, respectively, Suratos said.
–Maricel E. Burgonio


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