Economists’ consensus: BSP expected to maintain key interest rates

By Ben O. de Vera

A resounding consensus has emerged among economists polled by with 21 out of 24 respondents expecting the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) to keep its key interest rates unchanged during today’s Monetary Board meeting.

Earlier in the day, the United States Federal Reserve also maintained rates, even as the Fed signalled a possible rate hike later this year.

For the three outlier economists who projected a 25-basis point (bp) hike by the BSP, Reyes Tacandong & Co. senior adviser Jonathan Ravelas said it would be “a calibrated preemptive response to new threats of inflation.”

The BSP, meanwhile, would
would need to control or reduce lingering elevated consumer prices without compromising the goal of maintaining robust near-term economic growth in the Philippines.

Here’s the list of economists and financial institutions who forecasted
who forecasted that the BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) would maintain the policy rate at 6.25 percent:

1. Alvin Joseph Arogo (Philippine National Bank)
2. Aris Dacanay (HSBC)
3. Eduardo Francisco (BDO Capital and Investment Corp.)
4. Emilio Neri Jr. (Bank of the Philippine Islands)
5. Ernesto Pernia (University of the Philippines-Diliman)
6. Gareth Leather (Capital Economics)
7. Goldman Sachs Economics Research
8. Jonathan Koh (Standard Chartered)
9. Juliana Lee (Deutsche Bank)
10. Luis Gerardo Limlingan (Regina Capital Development Corp.)
11. Makoto Tsuchiya (Oxford Economics)
12. Metrobank Research
13. Michael Ricafort (Rizal Commercial Banking Corp.)
14. Miguel Chanco (Pantheon Macroeconomics)
15. Nicholas Antonio Mapa (ING)
16. Patrick Ella (Sun Life Investment Management and Trust Corp.)
17. Radhika Rao (DBS)
18. Robert Dan Roces (Security Bank)
19. Ruben Carlo Asuncion (UnionBank)
20. Sarah Tan (Moody’s Analytics)
21. Victor Abola (University of Asia and the Pacific)

Meanwhile, the three economists who anticipated a BSP policy rate increase to 6.5 percent are:

1. Jonathan Ravelas (Reyes Tacandong & Co.)
2. Julia Goh (United Overseas Bank)
3. Ser Percival Peña-Reyes (Ateneo de Manila University)