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P/$ RATE CLOSES AT P44.675/$1

The peso exchange rate closed higher at P44.675 to the US dollar yesterday at the Philippine Dealing & Exchange Corp. (PDEx) from P44.77 the previous day. The weighted average rate appreciated to P44.681 from P44.832. Total volume amounted to $706.1 million.


Power service to load networks had been restored by the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) in affected Mindanao areas following a bombing of its transmission tower in Maguindanao. The company, in a statement to the media, has emphasized that electricity delivery had been brought back to Cotabato City and surrounding municipalities. This was following its re-energization of the 138-kilovolt Kibawe-Sultan Kudarat line, which was accomplished around 11:55 p.m. on Tuesday (January 13). NGCP has expounded that the line "tripped and cut-off power transmission to customers in Cotabato City and nearby areas at 9:00 p.m." on January 13 (Monday). It stressed that "unidentified lawless elements bombed NGCP's tower" sited in Galakit, Pagalungan in Maguindanao. The company, in coordination with concerned authorities and law enforcement agencies, are still probing the circumstances surrounding the incident, albeit it noted, that it was an "isolated incident." Transmission lines as well as other power facilities could be easy targets for sabotage and probable terrorist attacks in the southern part of the country, hence, safety procedures and securities have been constantly reinforced in those areas. (MMV)


Strong November exports and manufacturing numbers suggest stronger economic growth in the fourth quarter after a 3Q expansion of 5.3% - the slowest pace in the first three quarters of 2014. Exports rose 19.7% on year while the volume of production was up 8.1% on year, according to data released by the Philippine Statistics Authority. The PSA reported that exports in November increased to $5.18 billion from $4.32 billion in the same period last year. For the 11 months to November, exports were up 10% on year at $56.93 billion. "The demand during the holiday season likely sustained exports and consumption growth until December 2014 which could potentially support a stronger fourth quarter GDP growth," said Emmanuel Esguerra, officer-in-charge of the National Economic and Development Authority, in a statement. "However, slack demand by the start of 2015 may soften the demand for Philippine exports, in addition to the uncertainties still lingering in many big economies." (Dow Jones)


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Title Annotation:Business News
Publication:Manila Bulletin
Geographic Code:9PHIL
Date:Jan 14, 2015
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