Foreign capital fled RP markets in ’08

Published by rudy Date posted on January 16, 2009

HEIGHTENED risk aversion led to net outflows of foreign investments in Philippine listed shares and other financial assets last year, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

In a statement, the BSP said foreign portfolio investment posted a net outflow of $1.4 billion in 2008, a reversal of the $3.5 billion inflow in 2007.

“The global financial crisis, which was precipitated by the US subprime mortgage crisis, has led to recession across the globe and heightened risk aversion,” BSP Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. said.

The hemorrhage last year was due to higher gross outflows of $9.710 billion compared with the gross inflows of $8.321 billion, a 46-percent drop from the $15.5 billion in 2007.

Registered investments in Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) shares dropped by 54 percent year-on-year to $5.7 billion, accounting for 68 percent of the gross portfolio investments, almost half of which were in telecommunications and property firms. Investments in peso-denominated government securities went down by 27 percent to $2.1 billion and accounted for 25 percent of the total.

Meanwhile, investments in peso time deposits jumped by 142 percent to $571.2 million while those in money market instruments surged by 282 percent to $4.9 million.

The United Kingdom, Singapore and the US were the top three investor countries and accounted for 70 percent of the registered portfolio investments during the year.

Gross capital outflows fell by 19 percent to $9.7 billion in 2008 from $12 billion in 2007.

Capital repatriations from investments in listed shares, government securities and money market instruments dropped last year.

Investments in listed shares dropped by 41 percent to $3.4 billion and accounted for 35 percent. Placements in government securities dropped by 9 percent to $2.2 billion and comprised 23 percent of the total. Money market instruments fell 73 percent to $5.3 million. Outflows due to withdrawals of investments in peso bank deposits went up by 6 percent to $4.1 billion.
— Maricel E. Burgonio, Manila Times

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