Inflation seen at 3-month high in August: Reuters poll


Posted at Sep 04 2017 06:00 PM

MANILA - Annual Philippine inflation likely quickened for a second straight month in August due to higher oil prices and a weak peso, a Reuters poll found, but the chances of an interest rate hike by the central bank this year remain slim.

The median forecast from 10 analysts polled on the August inflation rate was 3.0 percent, which would be the fastest rate in three months. In July, the pace was 2.8 percent.

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) expects the August headline figure to be in a 2.6-3.4 percent range. 

Rajiv Biswas, Asia Pacific chief economist at IHS Markit, said that despite higher world oil prices and the impact of peso depreciation on import prices, headline CPI is still around the mid-point of the central bank's target range "which is expected to allow the BSP to keep monetary policy settings on hold until the end of 2017". 

At its last policy review on Aug. 10, the central bank left its benchmark interest rate steady, with inflation on track to stay within the full-year 2-4 percent target despite solid economic growth.