August 20, 2019
The country’s balance of payments (BoP) reverted to a surplus in July, boosting the year-to-date tally to return to the P5-billion mark.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said on Monday July’s $248-million surplus was a reversal of the $404-million and $455-million shortfalls recorded in June and a year earlier.
“Inflows in July 2019 were reflected in the BSP’s foreign exchange operations and income from its investments abroad as well as in the national government’s (NG) net foreign currency deposits,” the BSP said in a statement.
These inflows were partially offset by the government’s foreign exchange obligations.
The year-to-date tally rose to a $5.03-billion surplus from $4.78 billion in the first six months of 2019. It, however, erased the $3.71-billion shortfall in the same period last year.
The January-to-July tally remained higher than the BSP’s upwardly revised forecast of a $3.7-billion surplus for this year.
“The surplus may be attributed partly to remittance inflows from overseas Filipinos during the first half of the year and net inflows of foreign direct investments during the first five months of the year,” the BSP said.
Personal remittances reached $16.25 billion in January to June, up 2.9 percent from the $15.78 billion posted a year earlier.
Net foreign direct investments hit $3.14 billion in the first five months, down 37.1 percent from the amount in the same period in 2018.
The payments balance position reflects the final gross international reserves level of $85.18 billion as of end-July, according to the BSP.
The BoP ended at a deficit of $2.306 billion last year, wider than the $863 million recorded in 2017, but lower than the BSP’s $5.5-billion forecast.
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