• INFLATION may have quickened for the second straight month in March, according to economists, which could make the case for the Philippine central bank to keep key rates higher for longer.
  • It probably rose by 3.8% last month, according to a median estimate of 17 analysts in a BusinessWorld poll, from 3.4% in February and 7.6% a year earlier.
  • The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) is trying to balance supporting the economy through rate cuts while ensuring that these do not fan inflation or put pressure on the peso and lead to capital outflows.
  • BSP Governor Eli M. Remolona, Jr. and Finance Secretary and Monetary Board member Ralph G. Recto estimated 3.9% inflation for March.
  • The central bank has yet to release its inflation forecast for the month. The local statistics agency will release the March consumer price index (CPI) data on April 5.