$299-M net ‘hot’ money outflows posted in April

By Lee C. Chipongian

The central bank registered $298.83-million worth of net foreign portfolio investment outflows in April, reversing same time last year’s $279 million net inflows.

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) logo

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said gross outflows totaled $1.3 billion for the month, while gross inflows amounted to $989 million.

Gross inflows in April of $989 million were 42.9 percent lower from the previous months $1.73 billion. “This may be attributed to investor reaction to the delayed approval of  the 2019 national government budget and the damage caused by the April 22 earthquake that jolted parts of Luzon and Visayas,” said the BSP, adding that “investors also stayed cautious amid the lack of fresh catalysts in the market and ongoing trade negotiations between the US and China.”

The BSP noted that by instrument, peso time deposits (TDs) registered less than $1 million in net inflows but net outflows were recorded for all other investment instruments: $61 million in listed companies; $238 million in peso government securities; and less than $1 million for other peso debt instruments and other portfolios.

The BSP said about 79.2 percent of investments in April were in Philippine Stock Exchange-listed securities such as in property companies, holding firms, banks, food, beverage and tobacco companies, and transportation services companies.

Another 20.8 percent were invested in peso government securities, and one percent in TDs.

The BSP listed the top five investor countries – accounting for 84.8 percent of the total – as the United Kingdom, the US, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Luxembourg.

In the meantime, the $1.3 billion gross outflows registered in April was 47.8 percent lower compared to March level. “The US continued to be the main destination of outflows, receiving 71.1 percent of total remittances,” said the BSP.