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Govt infra, capital spending up 43.6%

HIGHER infrastructure and other capital spending grew by double digits in November, buoying year-to-date results and prompting the Budget department to claim that the government was successfully pursuing its “Build Build Build” program. Spending totaled P62.9 billion during the month, up 43.6 percent from the P43.8 billion recorded a year …

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Foreign buying lifts PSEi to near 8,000

THE stock market rose for a second straight day on Thursday to just shy of returning to the 8,000 level, buoyed by foreign fund inflows. The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) rose to as high as 7,992.33 before ending the day up 0.83 percent or 65.56 points at 7,985.23. …

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Forex rules further liberalized by BSP

Foreign exchange (FX) rules have been further liberalized by monetary authorities, a development expected to give investors greater flexibility in terms of managing investments and cash flows. The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), in a statement on Thursday, announced that its policymaking Monetary Board had approved fresh reforms to the …

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Agri sector slowdown exceeds govt forecast

The agriculture sector slowed much more than expected last year, a Cabinet official said on Thursday, with the result attributed to severe typhoons that caused billions of pesos in farm damage. Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the sector expanded by just 1 percent in 2018 based on preliminary data, well …

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PH trade deficit narrows in Nov

THE country’s trade deficit continued to widen in November from a year earlier but the gap was slightly narrower compared to October, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported on Thursday. Inbound shipments rose by 6.8 percent year-on-year to $9.469 billion, PSA data showed, while exports contracted 0.3 percent to $5.569 …

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Samar town eyed as PH’s biggest rice seed producer

THE Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) are working together to develop San Roque, Northern Samar as the country’s biggest seed production center which could potentially produce high-yielding varieties in 2,000 hectares of agricultural land. Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the two agencies would coordinate …

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China’s charm offensive falling flat in SE Asia

BEN KRITZ CHINA’S efforts to present itself as a benign big brother to Southeast Asian nations are being met with widespread skepticism, according to a survey released earlier this week by a Singaporean think tank. The survey was conducted by the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute, and sought responses from government representatives, …

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US-China trade hopes propel PSEi past 7,900

THE stock market surged to the 7,900 level on Wednesday, hitting a near nine-month high, as investor optimism rose on news that trade talks between the United States and China were going well. The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) jumped by 2.83 percent or 217.55 points to close at …

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Diokno: 2018 infra spending below target

State spending on infrastructure likely fell slightly below target last year but the Duterte administration cannot be said to have held back from implementing a policy aim, a Cabinet official claimed on Wednesday. In a press briefing, Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno said infrastructure spending as a percentage of gross domestic …

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Fitch unit still bearish on peso

The Philippine peso will continue to lose ground against the dollar in 2019, a Fitch Group unit said, with factors such as country’s trade and current account deficits and still high inflation leading to a P54.13:$1 close by yearend. “We expect the Philippine peso to weaken slightly against the dollar …

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