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Philippines lifts rates again to 3.5%

June 20, 2018

MANILA - The Central Bank of the Philippines, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) today  raised its overnight reverse repurchase rate (RRR) by 25bps to 3.50%, despite soft inflation in May. 

“In our view, sustained peso weakness nudged the central bank to hike the policy rate,” ANZ Bank says in a research note. The BSP had marginally lowered its inflation forecast for 2018 to 4.5% from 4.6% earlier.

For 2019, the BSP now expects inflation to average 3.3%, slightly lower than its May projection of 3.4%. It also expects inflation to peak in Q3 2018.

Taiwan’s strong May export orders may not be sustainable

June 21, 2018

TAIPEI - Strong gains in Taiwan’s May export orders were broad-based, with strength seen in export orders for electronic products (+14.0% y/y) complemented by the traditional sectors – base metals (+14.8% y/y), chemicals (+22.6% y/y), and plastic articles (+17.2% y/y). Export orders for information and communication technology (ICT) products also rose in May (+4.2% y/y) after three straight months of decline.

Taiwan welcomes outcome of Trump-Kim summit in Singapore

June 14, 2018

TAIWAN - The outcome of the summit between U.S. President Donald  Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un this week in Singapore has been welcomed by Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA). It described the meeting as of great significance to peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific “as it creates new opportunities for resolving long-standing issues in a peaceful manner”. 

“I look forward to the two leaders’ bold decisions": South Korean President Moon

June 11, 2018

SEOUL – Twenty-four hours ahead of the North Korean-United States Summit in Singapore, South Korea’s President, Moon Jae-in, has said he “looks forward to the two leaders' bold decisions to freely exchange what they want from each other so that the wish of people across the world for a new era on the Korean Peninsula could be realised”.

ANZ lowers Malaysia’s growth forecast as consumption, investment dip

June 11, 2018

KUALA LUMPUR – ANZ Bank has revise lower its GDP growth forecast for 2018 to 5.4% from 5.7% previously, mainly due to the weaker out-turns in the early part of the year. “We are also revising our GDP growth forecast for 2019 to 5.2% from 5.5% previously, on the back of lower public consumption and investment, alongside an expected moderation in export growth,” ANZ says in a research note.