PH economy grew by 5.9% in Q3
MANILA -The Philippine economy grew 5.9 percent year-on-year in the third quarter, faster than the 4.3-percent expansion recorded in the second quarter and exceeding market expectations, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported Thursday.
This brought to 5.5 percent the country’s year-to-date average gross domestic product (GDP) growth.
At a press conference, Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said the government would have to grow by 7.2 percent in the final quarter of the year to attain at least the low-end of the government’s 6 to 7 percent target for this year.
The latest figure offered good news to a country battling stubbornly-high consumer prices. It was higher than most GDP projections ranging from 4.3 percent to 4.9 percent.
From January to October, average inflation soared above the government’s 2 to 4 percent target at 6.4 percent and is hitting the economy where it hurts the most: consumer spending.
Data showed household consumption grew 5 percent in the third quarter, slower than the 5.5 percent expansion seen in the preceding quarter.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas has embarked on its most aggressive tightening in two decades to tame inflation, which also has the effect of crimping growth.
As it is, the third quarter gross domestic product figure would be a key data that the BSP would consider at its Nov 16 meeting, where monetary authorities would decide whether additional tightening is needed.