Gov't may decide on retail bond sale increase on Tuesday


Posted at Aug 16 2010 11:00 AM | Updated as of Aug 16 2010 07:00 PM

MANILA,  Philippines  - The Philippine government is considering whether to increase the size of its current retail bond offer beyond the P100 billion ($2.2 billion) cap, but any changes would only be announced on Tuesday, the last day of the offer, a senior official said.

"These are informal proposals," Deputy Treasurer Eduardo Mendiola told Reuters on Monday, referring to proposals from the issue's underwriters to sell more of the debt.

"We will have to discuss that today. If there will be adjustments, that will have to be made tomorrow."

Mendiola said the government has so far sold P77 billion of the retail bonds, including P12 billion sold to state-owned firms.

A maximum of P10 billion  a day can still be sold to the public on Monday and Tuesday, when the offer closes.

The government has said it did not want to go overboard with debt issues, even as Manila is set to post a record nominal budget deficit this year of P325 billion, or 3.9%  of GDP. 

National Treasurer Roberto Tan has said the government would adjust its market borrowing plan for the rest of 2010 based on the retail bond sale. 

The government has said it planned to sell P108 billion of bills and bonds locally in the third quarter.