The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas main office in Manila.

THE CENTRAL BANK’S net earnings went down by 70.9% as of August, dragged by higher interest expenses, preliminary data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed.

The BSP’s net profit fell by 70.9% to P22.9 billion in the first eight months from P78.82 billion seen in the same period last year.

This is despite the increase in its net gains from foreign exchange rate fluctuations to P43.67 billion as of end-August, 2.8% higher than the P42.5 billion seen in the same period in 2022.

Revenues in the eight-month period stood at P117.13 billion, up 2.1% year on year from P114.72 billion.

Broken down, the central bank’s interest income rose by 23.1% to P127.52 billion from P103.57 billion.

But miscellaneous income, which includes trading gains, fees, penalties, and other operating income, stood at a net loss of P10.4 billion versus the P11.15-billion net gain in the previous year.

Meanwhile, the BSP’s expenses climbed 75.9% year on year to P137.87 billion at end-August from P78.37 billion.

This was driven by the surge in interest expenses, which more than doubled to P109.67 billion from P44.47 billion. 

Other expenses incurred dropped by 16.8% to P28.2 billion from P33.91 billion a year earlier.

Separate BSP data showed the total assets held by the central bank inched up by 0.3% to P7.43 billion as of end-August. Liabilities also edged up by 0.2% to P7.29 billion.

The central bank’s net worth stood at P137.46 billion at end-August, higher than P128.1 billion a year earlier. — Keisha B. Ta-asan