The 5.6-percent growth of the country's gross domestic product (GDP) for the first quarter of 2019 was the lowest in 4 years since the 5.1 percent recorded in the first quarter of 2015. It ended 15 consecutive quarters of at least 6 percent growth.
The slowdown can also be attributed to the country's inflation, which accelerated in 2018, peaking at 6.7 percent in September or its highest level in nearly a decade.
As a result, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas tightened monetary policy, raising key policy rates by a total of 175 basis points in 2018.
The BSP has since cut interest rates by 25 basis points in May as inflation settled within the government's target range of 2 to 4 percent for the fifth straight month in June.
Addressing food supply issues and rice tariffication helped bring down prices.
Unemployment rate for 2018 was at 5.3 percent, its lowest level in more than a decade. It has continued to decline in the first half of 2019.
The underemployment rate slightly increased to 16.4 percent in 2018 (from 16.2 percent in 2017) although there was an improvement in the second half of the year, with underemployment falling to 13.3 percent in October 2018.
Both unemployment and underemployment rates have declined in the first half of 2019.
Labor force participation continued to fall. It reached a record low for the second straight year at 61 percent in 2018, after averaging 61.2 percent in 2017.
Foreign direct investments continued to decline in the first 4 months of 2019, contracting by 14 percent.
After reaching a record $10.3 billion in 2017, foreign direct investments (FDI) contracted by 4.4 percent in 2018 to reach $9.8 billion.