Rates to stay steady – Moody’s unit

MOODY’S Analytics expects the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to keep the policy rate at 6.5 percent this Thursday with inflation expected to continue slowing in November and December.
“We expect inflation to ease over the last two months of 2023 but stay above BSP’s target range of 2 percent to 4 percent,” it said in a report on Monday.
The central bank’s policy-setting Monetary Board last month ordered an off-cycle 25-basis point rate hike ahead of its November 16 meeting, citing rising inflation risks.
Consumer prices picked up anew in August and September but slowed to a three-month low of 4.9 percent last month, pulled down by slower increases in the prices of food and nonalcoholic beverages.

The October result brought the year-to-date average to 6.4 percent, still well over the BSP’s 2.0- to 4.0-percent target.
BSP Governor Eli Remolona Jr. has said that monetary authorities would be looking at the latest inflation numbers and third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth data before they decide whether or not to tweak current policy settings.

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The Philippine economy grew by a stronger-than-expected 5.9 percent in the third quarter, accelerating from a disappointing 4.3 percent three months earlier.
The July-to-September result nearly hit the low end of the 6.0- to 7.0-percent target for 2023. Year-to-date, however, economic growth remains well below the goal at 5.5 percent.