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Inflation at 7.7%, not 5.5% as Marcos tells ASEAN dialogue

The country’s inflation rate stood at 7.7% in October 2022 and no official report showed it declining to 5.5% when President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. made the claim on Nov. 13 at the second Global Dialogue of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

The Philippine Statistics Authority reported the 7.7% year-on-year inflation rate, a 14-year high, on Nov. 4.

Despite the absence of new figures from the PSA at the time of the Asean dialogue, Marcos said during his intervention:

Our inflation rate has reached a peak of over 7 percent. This has gone down and it hovers around 5 and a half percent right now, upon the upward adjustment of our interest rates of 75 basis points.

Marcos did not give the basis for his 5.5% estimate. The closest figure to what he cited is the 5.4% year-to-date inflation rate in the PSA’s Nov. 4 report.

The 5.4% year-to-date inflation rate is the average from January to October. It is different from the 7.7% year-on-year rate, which compares the inflation rate in October from the year before.

[Update: Marcos on Dec. 6 acknowledged that the country's inflation was "running rampant and out of control" after he said he received the "poor news" from the PSA that the inflation rate had climbed to 8% in November .]

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas announced on Nov. 17, four days after the ASEAN global dialogue, that the Monetary Board had raised the interest rate on the bank’s overnight reverse repurchase facility by 75 basis points to 5%.

It projected that the average inflation rate could be 5.8% by the end of the year. This is higher than the 4.5% average inflation rate reported by the PSA in 2021. (JS)


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