Philippines: Economy likely to maintain momentum in the first quarter
February 10, 2011
The Leading Economic Indicator (LEI) published by the National Statistics Coordination Board (NSCB) rose from a revised minus 0.031 points in the fourth quarter of 2010 to minus 0.012 points in the first quarter of 2011. The print represented an improvement over the previous reading when the LEI dropped by 0.026 points. Seven of the eleven components composing the LEI were positive, in particular, total merchandise imports and the exchange rate were top positive contributors. On the other hand, consumer price index and money supply were top negative contributors to the LEI. An improving LEI suggests that the economy is likely to maintain its robust pace in the first quarter of 2011, after expanding a strong 7.1% in the final quarter of 2010. Official first quarter GDP data will be available on 30 May. The government expects growth to remain within the 7.0 - 8.0% target in 2011.