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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        18  February 2011

January Philippine hot money inflows ease

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Hot money flows into the Philippines eased in the first month of the year, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

In a statement, BSP Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said foreign portfolio investments (FPI) yielded net inflows of $193 million in January, or 13.5 percent higher than the $170 million a year ago, but 54.9 percent lower than the $428 million in December 2010.

The BSP attributed the lower January inflow to profit-taking activities as well as the sell-offs triggered by the tensions in Egypt that began late last month.

Investments in Philippine Stock Exchange-listed shares amounted to $616 million, accounting for 40.1 percent of total BSP-registered FPI for the month, up by 41.3 percent from the $436 million l in the same month last year.

The $921 million balance of registered investments, or 59.9 percent, was in peso government securities and time deposits with a minimum maturity of 90 days.

The top five nationalities of investors were the United States, the United Kingdom, Singapore, Luxembourg and Hong Kong, contributing 90 percent of the total FPI.

Outflows of BSP-registered hot money during the period reached $1.3 billion from $406 million a year ago and $973 million in December.

The central bank said the bulk of these were withdrawals from interim peso deposits, representing divestment proceeds from registered investment that were parked in said accounts pending reinvestment or repatriation.

Outflows during the period reached $7.4 billion compared with the $5.4 billion in the same period last year, which were mostly withdrawals from interim peso deposits, the BSP said. Registration of foreign investments with the BSP is voluntary. It entitles the non-resident investor or his representative to buy foreign exchange from authorized agent banks or their subsidiary/affiliate foreign exchange corporations for repatriation of capital and remittance of related earnings.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More

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