MANILA, Philippines - Many Filipinos are going to pawnshops, not just to pawn their valuable items, but to pay their monthly bills or receive money from overseas.
A Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas survey showed that 72% of Filipinos have gone to a pawnshop in the last 12 months to pay their bills and send or receive remittances.
BSP Deputy Governor Nestor Espenilla said the BSP survey results showed how pawnshops have turned into a "major financial service provider" in the country.
Espenilla said pawnshops can be found in rural areas, while banks can be hard to find in some municipalities.
Pawnshops have played a big role in addressing the need for financial services in the rural areas. The BSP survey showed 610 out of the 1,634 municipalities in the country do not have a bank.