The country's overall balance of payments (BOP) position posted a deficit of US$404 million in June 2019, significantly lower than the US$1.18 billion BOP deficit recorded in the same month last year. The substantial outflow in June 2019 stemmed from the principal and interest payments of the National Government (NG) on its foreign exchange obligations. This outflow was partially tempered, however, by the NG's net foreign currency deposits, and the BSP's foreign exchange operations as well as income from its investments abroad during the month in review.

On a cumulative basis, the BOP position for the period January � June 2019 posted a surplus of US$4.79 billion, a turnaround from the US$3.26 billion BOP deficit recorded in the first half of 2018. The surplus may be attributed partly to remittance inflows from overseas Filipinos during the first five months of the year and net inflows of foreign direct investments during the first four months of the year.

The BOP position reflects the final gross international reserves (GIR) level of US$85.77 billion as of end-June 2019. At this level, the GIR represents a more than ample liquidity buffer and is equivalent to 7.5 months' worth of imports of goods and payments of services and primary income. It is also equivalent to 5.1 times the country's short-term external debt based on original maturity and 3.7 times based on residual maturity.1,2

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1 Short-term debt based on residual maturity refers to outstanding external debt with original maturity of one year or less, plus principal payments on medium- and long-term loans of the public and private sectors falling due within the next 12 months.

2 The preliminary data on GIR as of end-June 2019 was released to the public on 5 July 2019. Preliminary data are released every 7th of the month in the Statistics section of the BSP's website in compliance with the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) Special Data Dissemination Standard (SDDS). If the 7th day of the month falls on a weekend or is a non-working holiday, the release date shall be the working day before the 7th. Meanwhile, the BOP position and final GIR data are published in the BSP's website every 19th day of the month. If the 19th day of the month falls on a weekend or is a non-working holiday, the release date shall be the working day nearest to the 19th.

Source: Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP)