Preliminary data showed that the country's gross international reserves (GIR) rose to US$75.49 billion as of end-November 2018, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Nestor A. Espenilla, Jr. announced today.1 This was higher than the US$74.71 billion level recorded in October 2018 due mainly to inflows arising from the BSP's foreign exchange operations and its income from its investments abroad. However, the increase in the GIR level was partially tempered by the payments made by the National Government (NG) for its foreign exchange obligations and its net foreign currency withdrawals as well as the revaluation adjustments on the BSP's gold holdings resulting from the decrease in the price of gold in the international market.
The end-November 2018 level of GIR continues to serve as an ample external liquidity buffer and is equivalent to 6.9 months' worth of imports of goods and payments of services and primary income. It is also equivalent to 5.8 times the country's short-term external debt based on original maturity and 4.1 times based on residual maturity.2
Net international reserves (NIR), which refer to the difference between the BSP's GIR and total short-term liabilities, likewise increased by US$0.78 billion to US$75.47 billion as of end-November 2018 from the end-October 2018 level of US$74.69 billion.
1 The final data on GIR are released to the public every 19th day of the month in the Statistics section of the BSP's website under the Special Data Dissemination Standard (SDDS). If the 19th day of the month falls on a weekend or is a non-working holiday, the release date shall be the working day nearest to the 19th.
2 Short-term debt based on residual maturity refers to outstanding external debt with original maturity of one year or less, plus principal payments on medium- and long-term loans of the public and private sectors falling due within the next 12 months.
Source: Bangko Sentral NG Pilipinas (BSP)