Bloomberg News

Philippine Exports Decline for a Sixth Month on Electronics

December 13, 2011

(Updates with analyst’s comment in fourth paragraph.)

Dec. 13 (Bloomberg) -- Philippine exports fell in October for a sixth straight month as a faltering global recovery sapped demand for the nation’s electronics products.

Shipments abroad declined 14.6 percent from a year earlier to $4.09 billion after falling a revised 27 percent in September, the National Statistics Office said in Manila today. The median of nine estimates in a Bloomberg News survey was for a 16.5 percent drop.

Nations from Indonesia to Australia have cut interest rates in recent months to sustain spending at home as Europe’s debt crisis damps demand for Asia-Pacific exports such as Philippine- made Texas Instruments Inc. semiconductors. Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amando Tetangco has said the central bank is “open” to the possibility of easing policy early in 2012.

“There’s a genuine drop in global trade activity which is being felt by local exporters,” Arthur Michael de Castro, an analyst at Bank of the Philippine Islands in Manila, said before the report. “Slowdowns in and among our neighbors are showing hints that potential substitutes for weakness in the U.S. and Europe aren’t going to be of much help.”

The peso fell 0.6 percent to 43.85 per dollar as of 9:01 a.m. in Manila, according to Tullett Prebon Plc. The benchmark Philippine Stock Exchange Composite Index ended down 0.4 percent yesterday.

Electronics sales, which account for about half of Philippine exports, slid 36.5 percent to $1.9 billion in October from a year earlier, today’s report showed.

Gross domestic product in the Philippines rose 3.2 percent last quarter from a year earlier, compared with a 3.1 percent gain in the previous three months.

Shipments abroad account for about 30 percent of the $200 billion Philippine economy.

--With assistance from Cecilia Yap in Manila and Michael Munoz in Hong Kong. Editors: Sunil Jagtiani, Stephanie Phang

To contact the reporters on this story: Karl Lester M. Yap in Manila at kyap5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Phang at sphang@bloomberg.net


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