Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement on Friday that the measures implemented by the Duterte administration to control inflation are working. As a result, Malacañang is confident that business and consumer confidence will soon begin rising in the coming months as prices continue to stabilize.
“The President has kept an ear on the ground and matched this with his strong political will and decisive action in responding to our people’s concerns,” Panelo said.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Fourth Quarter Business Expectation Survey (BES) and Consumer Expectation Survey (CES), released on Thursday, showed that business and consumer communities have concerns over inflation, fuel prices, and peso exchange rates.
Panelo acknowledged these concerns, but remained confident that current efforts by the government will soon see these issues resolved.
“The prices of commodities are already stabilizing, with inflation going down from 6.7 percent in October to 6 percent in November. Fuel prices have likewise dropped for the eighth consecutive week… We also expect a turnaround in the peso this month,” Panelo said.
The BSP’s recent surveys showed that the confidence index (CI) of the business community, as reported in the BES, dropped from 30.1 percent to 27.2 percent in 2018’s third quarter. The CES survey shows that consumer CI went down from -22.5 percent to -7.1 percent in the last quarter.
BSP officials said that the surveys results skewed negatively as consumers were not expecting inflation to ease in November. According to Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo, respondents may have answered differently if they had known that inflation this month would settle back to only 6 percent, nearly a point drop from the multi-year high of 6.7 percent seen in September and October.