PH T-bill rates stabilizing: De Leon

By Joann Villanueva

October 29, 2018, 5:44 pm

MANILA -- The rates of Philippine Treasury bills (T-bills) registered mix results Monday, which National Treasurer Rosalia de Leon said is part of a normalization phase brought about by expectations that inflation for the year has peaked.

The bellwether 91-day paper’s average rate rose to 4.979 percent from 4.952 percent during the auction last October 22.

It was offered for PHP4 billion and was awarded in full. Tenders reached PHP5.936 billion.

The average rate of the 181-day T-bill inched up to 6.159 percent from 6.059 percent in the previous session.

The Bureau of the Treasury’s (BTr) auction committee made a full award of PHP5 billion while tenders totaled PHP7.534 billion.

On the other hand, the average rate of the 364-day T-bill declined to 6.410 percent from 6.489 percent during the auction Monday last

The auction committee also made a full award of PHP6 billion for the tenor after bids were more than twice at PHP13.515 billion.

De Leon said members of the auction committee noticed that yields submitted by investors have stabilized and attributed this partly to statements from authorities that the rate of price increases may have peaked last September at 6.7 percent.

She also cited the implementation of several measures targeted to increase the supply of rice and other food items, as well as the possible deferment of the scheduled implementation of the second phase of excise tax hike on oil in 2019.

Monetary officials’ statement for very modest rate hike, if indeed a rate increase is needed, and data-dependent policy decisions also contributed to the stabilization of interest rates, she said.

“So we hope that we will now see, more or less, the rates already stabilizing and hopefully to go on a downward trajectory in the coming auctions,” she said.

Meanwhile, de Leon said they are still monitoring the market in relation to the planned issuance of US dollar-denominated bond and retail treasury bond (RTB).

She said they are considering the issuance of 10-year or 25-year Republic of the Philippine (ROP) bond but the timing is still being studied since rates of US Treasuries remain low.

She added that they are also studying what is in the pipeline in other jurisdictions. (PNA)