PHL registers US$ 345M BOP surplus in end-Feb ’14

By Joann Santiago

MANILA, March 18 (PNA) — The Philippines posted a US$ 345 million balance of payment (BOP) surplus in February 2014, a reversal from the US$ 4.48 billion deficit in the first month of the year.

This brought the deficit in the first two months this year to US$ 4.14 billion, data released by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Wednesday showed.

It is way beyond the central bank’s US$ 3 billion BOP surplus target for 2014.

The country’s BOP position in February 2013 is a deficit of US$ 960 million but it was a surplus of US$ 1.08 billion for the first two months of last year.

The surplus in the second month of 2014 can be partly attributed to the improvement in the foreign portfolio investments during the month.

Central bank data shows that although net foreign portfolio investments, otherwise known as hot money due to the speed it comes in and out of the economy, is still in negative last February the amount is lower at US$ 361.09 million from the US$ 1.84 billion net outflow in the previous month.

Monetary officials expect the BOP position to improve in the coming months as investors take note of economies that are expected to fare well vis-à-vis the global economic developments. (PNA)