MANILA - The Philippines booked $40 million in net outflows of central bank-registered foreign portfolio investments in February, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said on Wednesday.
This was a reversal of the $40 million net inflows recorded for the same period a year ago.
Also called "hot money" for the ease with which they enter and exit an economy, foreign portfolio investments registered $1.38 billion in gross outflows and $1.34 billion gross inflows for the month. This contrasted with the $98 million net inflows recorded in January.
"About 39.8 percent of investments registered were in PSE-listed securities (pertaining mainly to banks, property companies, holding firms, food, beverage and tobacco companies and telecommunication services firms) while the remaining 60.2 percent went to investments in Peso government securities," the BSP said.
The $1.34 billion registered investments for February reflected a 40.6 percent increase compared to the $952 million recorded in January 2021, the central bank said. However, the $1.38 billion in gross outflows for the month was also larger than the $854 million booked in January.
"Year-on-year, registered investments were 2.7 percent lower than the $1.37 billion recorded in February 2020," the BSP said.
The central bank however also noted that registration of inward foreign investments with the BSP is optional under the liberalized rules on foreign exchange transactions.
The stock market has fallen 5.6 percent from the start of January to the end of February. It has fallen 10 percent year to date.