The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said Thursday it posted a 289-percent increase in net profit in the first seven months to P33.07 billion from P8.50 billion a year ago, on higher revenues and lower expenses.
Latest data showed that revenues increased to P42.53 billion from P37.56 billion a year earlier, as interest income climbed to P42.61 billion from P32.39 billion.
Expenses in January to July declined to P34.33 billion from P40.61 billion. The BSP also posted P24.89-billion gain on foreign exchange fluctuations, or more than double the P11.19 billion a year ago.
Prudent management made the Bangko Sentral post net profits since 2016. Prior to that, the regulator incurred losses from 2010 to 2015. The biggest net loss was recorded in 2012 at P95.38 billion. The losses were trimmed to P17.51 billion in 2013, P9.86 billion in 2014 and P4.42 billion in 2015.
The BSP posted a net income of P17.51 billion in 2016 and a record P22.51 billion in 2017.
Bangko Sentral Deputy Governor Diwa Guinigundo earlier said that “if exchange rate improves and strengthens, which means the economy is improving, BSP incurs losses. But if the peso depreciates, BSP profits.”
The peso ended in July at 53.095 against the US dollar, pulled down by the trade war between the US and China, and the possibility that the US Federal Reserve might increase interest rates further in the coming months.
Economists said another reason for the peso’s decline was the widening trade deficit on higher imports that outpaced exports amid the growing economy.
The Bangko Sentral has been pushing for the passage into law of a bill seeking additional P150-billion capitalization. The government released in January 2014 an equity assistance of P10 billion to the Bangko Sentral that completed its P50-billion capitalization, or 20 years since its creation in 1993.
The bank is seeking an additional capitalization of P150 billion payable in three years, on top of the existing P50 billion, in a bid to accomplish its functions effectively.