Latest Stories

Jan-March BOP registers surplus of $1.54B


Net inflow of dollars into the country grew in the first quarter as remittances remained strong and more foreign portfolio funds came in due to the favorable sentiment on the economy.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Friday reported that the country’s balance of payments (BOP) registered a surplus of $1.54 billion from January to March, up 24 percent from $1.24 billion in the same period last year.

In March alone, the BOP stood at a surplus of $452 million, reversing the $209-million deficit in the same month last year.

The BOP is a record of the country’s commercial transactions with the rest of the world. A surplus, which indicates that the inflow of dollars and other foreign-exchange exceeded the outflow, causes a buildup in the country’s total reserves of foreign exchange or the gross international reserves (GIR).

Foreign-exchange inflow to the Philippines was driven largely by remittances from overseas Filipinos and foreign investments in peso-denominated securities like stocks and bonds.

The BSP reported on Monday that remittances in the first two months of the year amounted to $3.36 billion, up 7 percent from $3.14 billion in the same period last year. Remittances in March have yet to be reported, but officials expected the figure to likewise by higher year-on-year.

Despite the lingering weakness of the US economy and the prolonged crisis in the euro zone, remittances to the Philippines continued to grow because of the strong demand for Filipino workers in alternative labor markets like the Middle East.

Foreign portfolio investments were also robust given the improved sentiment on the Philippines.

The BSP reported last week that the net inflow of foreign “hot money” amounted to $1.09 billion in the first quarter, more than double the $464.45 million registered in the same period last year.

The rise in foreign portfolio inflow fueled the surge in the Philippine Stock Exchange index, which has broken record highs several times since the start of this year.

The inflow was likewise credited for pushing interest rates on domestic government securities to historic lows.

The positive sentiment on the Philippines followed its encouraging growth performance. Last year, the economy expanded by 6.6 percent to become one of the fastest growing in Asia. Its growth rate last year beat the government’s official target of 5 to 6 percent.

Officials expected foreign portfolio flows to continue growing throughout the rest of the year, especially after the Philippines got an investment grade from Fitch Ratings late last month.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: balance of payments , BOP , BSP , Business , economy , Foreign Exchange , Remittances

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • $57-B mega plan to solve Metro’s mega woes
  • Aquino vows to step up fight against corruption
  • Santiago scoffs at rushing defense pact for Obama visit
  • Former solon, 2 others sanctioned for unfair labor practice
  • Let us pray for the nation, healing priest asks leaders
  • Sports

  • Former Pacquiao sparmate Porter keeps IBF title
  • Grueling 2014 Le Tour de Filipinas hits road
  • ICTSI Tour big hitters have edge at Sherwood
  • What Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather could do
  • PH Am match play golf under way at Orchard
  • Lifestyle

  • Transitions and resurrection in the performing arts
  • ‘Archaeology tour’ of Cebu’s heritage of faith
  • Historic Fort Bonifacio tunnel converted into a septic tank
  • ‘Imports’ from London, and play of the year
  • Korean animation comes of age
  • Entertainment

  • Easter musings
  • Solenn in shorts
  • Unmerry mix of attention-calling moves on ‘Mini-Me’ TV tilts
  • Persistence pays off for The 1975
  • Special section in LA fest for Filipino films
  • Business

  • BDO seen keen on bidding for Cocobank
  • Bataan freeport investment pledges up 1,302%
  • Golden Week
  • Bourse to woo Cebu stock mart investors
  • Supper power
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Gigi’s home
  • Palace stonewalls on MRT inquiry
  • Couple of things too
  • There is plenty of water behind Wawa Dam
  • Triduum thoughts of a young boy
  • Global Nation

  • Search for Etihad passengers launched
  • Japan presents $57-B ‘dream plan’ to solve Metro congestion
  • Tim Tebow’s charity hospital in Davao seen to open in 7 months
  • OFW died of Mers-CoV in Saudi Arabia, says family
  • Aquino, Obama to tackle US pivot to Asia during state visit
  • Marketplace