April 20, 2018 / 4:00 AM / a year ago

Philippines c.bank says monetary policy still data-driven, may hold rates

MANILA, April 20 (Reuters) - The Philippines’ monetary policy will remain data-driven, a central bank deputy governor said on Friday, noting that authorities may hold off adjusting interest rates for the rest of the year if the next inflation outlook is within target.

“Monetary policy remains data-dependent, anything can change between now and the next monetary board meeting,” Diwa Guinigundo told a media briefing.

Guinigundo said if the central bank’s next inflation outlook, to be released in May, falls within its 2-4 percent target, “I think the likelihood of keeping the policy rates throughout the year will be higher.”

The central bank holds its next policy meeting on May 10.

Some economists say policymakers could hike interest rates for the first time in more than three years after inflation accelerated to a five-year high last month.

Reporting by Enrico dela Cruz Writing by Manolo Serapio Jr.

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