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Freeman Cebu Business

Remittances increased 1.8% in November 2014

C&C VIEWS - Ed Limtingco - The Freeman

According to the Institute for Development and Econometric Analysis, Inc. latest NewsBriefs, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, personal remittances from Overseas Filipinos increased 1.8 percent year-on-year to reach US$2.3 billion in November 2014. For the January-November 2014 period, remittances amounted to US$24.4 billion, an increase of 6.2 percent from November 2013.

Cash remittances coursed through banks also rose by 2 percent to US$2.1 billion in November 2014. Cumulatively, cash remittances registered an increase of 5.7 percent, amounting to US$22 billion.

The increase in remittances rides on the sustained growth in deployment of skilled manpower. According to the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, for the period January-November 2014, a total of 855,357 job orders were processed for service, production, and professional, technical and related workers. Prime destinations were Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Taiwan and Qatar.

Likewise per same published report, state borrowing increased 6.93percent year-on-year to Php33.7 billion in November. Of this sum, Php33.29 billion came from domestic borrowing, up 8.59percent from a year earlier. Cumulatively, borrowings amounted to Php330.72 billion. Gross borrowing for 2014 is projected at Php730.03 billion. Meanwhile, the government registered a fiscal deficit of Php26.8 billion in the first 11 months of 2014, compared with a Php111.5-billion gap in the same period in 2013.

Furthermore, according to DBS Bank Ltd., inflation could further decelerate to 4.0% this year from the 4.1% average recorded last year as oil prices continue to decline. The bank also expects BSP to only raise rates by 25 basis points to 4.25percent by the second half of 2015, when the US Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates.

Moreover, the BSP announced last Monday that it maintained the applicable Peso Rediscount Facility rates for the month of January 2015. Rates for Rediscounting Windows I and II have been effective starting 15 September 2014. Total availments of thrift and rural banks under the Peso Rediscount Facility amounted to Php1.338 billion as of end-December 2014. This figure is 92.5 percent lower than the Php17.96 billion total registered in the same period in 2013.

Lastly, as part of its financial inclusion mandate, the BSP has approved a measure to bring financial services to unbanked areas of the country. Part of the regulation to encourage banks is a waiver of processing fees for the establishment of branches in these unbanked areas. Moreover, the BSP is widening the scope of activities and services micro-banking offices can provide.

Incidentally, at least eight tax return forms can now be submitted online through the BIR’s Electronic Filing and Payment System (eFPs). As of end-October 2014, BIR collections amounted to Php1.098 trillion, still 7.81percent short of the agency's target for the period but up 10.54percent year-on-year, according to the researchers of IDEA.

elimtingco@yahoo.com.

BANGKO SENTRAL BANK LTD BILLION DEVELOPMENT AND ECONOMETRIC ANALYSIS ELECTRONIC FILING AND PAYMENT SYSTEM FEDERAL RESERVE FOR THE JANUARY-NOVEMBER OVERSEAS FILIPINOS PESO REDISCOUNT FACILITY PHILIPPINE OVERSEAS EMPLOYMENT ADMINISTRATION YEAR
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