Philippines: Cash remittances growth accelerates in January
March 15, 2019
Cash remittances from Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) totaled USD 2.5 billion in January, which was a 4.4% increase from the same month a year prior, and an acceleration from the 3.9% rise registered in December (USD 2.8 billion).
On a cumulative basis, cash transfers in the 12 months up to January totaled USD 29.0 billion, a notch up from December’s USD 28.9 billion.
Robust cash remittances in January continued to be supported by strong inflows from the U.S.—the origin of over a third of all remittances—followed by Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and the UK. January’s result suggests Filipino household spending will likely remain solid in the first quarter of 2019. Remittances, which accounted for nearly 10% of GDP in 2018, are an important source of income for many Filipino families and thus constitute one of the main drivers of private consumption.
Philippines Private Consumption Forecast
Last month, FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expected private consumption to grow 5.7% in 2019, which was up 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 5.6% in 2020. New forecasts will be published on 19 March.
Author: Lindsey Ice, Economist