Are We Out of the Woods? About Inflation and Stock Market

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By Rick Daligdig

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Every Month, the Philippine Statistic Authority (PSA) releases the month-on-month headline inflation and again, as expected due to the higher price of food commodities especially rice together with the weekly oil price hike, September’s inflation printed at 6.1% compared to 5.3% of August. This was also a testament to the complete reversal of the government’s expectation that inflation will slow down in the coming months.


Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas considering another round of rate hikes but on the contrary, the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) says that it will leave a bad taste in the mouth if will materializes. The inflation push is more on the supply side where the rice inventory of our country is low and the oil-producing countries are cutting off their production making the oil price in the market expensive. Where is our government in the midst of this?


The economic managers say that they are on top of the situation. NEDA Sec. Arsenio Balisacan assured that the Marcos Jr. Administration is ready to assist the vulnerable sectors of society. The government launch the food stamp program which aims to reduce the hunger incidence in the country. The Pantawid Pasada program of DOTr has been implemented to assist our transport sector. For the commuting public, the Libreng Pasada Program will revive along the EDSA Carousel and other major thoroughfares.


For food production and security, President Marcos Jr. issues the EO 41. President Marcos Jr. has ordered all local government units (LGUs) to suspend or discontinue the collection of “pass-through fees,” saying they add to logistic costs, which are often passed on to consumers. The initial result of this EO is that the request of manufacturers for the price increase has been pulled out. In addition, the harvesting season of rice is ongoing plus the entering of rice imports will make the rice price stabilize in the coming weeks.


On the investment side, the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSEi) went up by 11.91 points or 0.19% to end at 6,264.07 on Tuesday, while the broader all-shares index rose by 6.22 points or 0.18% to 3,386.27. Thanks to last-minute bargain hunting and the latest data country’s trade in goods deficit shrank by 31.5% in August to $4.13 billion from the $6.03-billion gap in the same period last year, preliminary data from the Philippine Statistics Authority released on Tuesday showed. However experts say that to say that the PSEi is in a near bull scenario, PSEi must break the range between the 6,300 to 6,500 level.


Inflation. Oil Price Hike and bearish type Stock Market are just some of the factors that affect the whole macro-economy setup. There are remaining months and as some analyst says, we can still manage to get out of the woods with proper management, resourcefulness, and decisive thinking to our government leaders. ##

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