Mon. May 23rd, 2022

Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Governor Benjamin Diokno said the market might have exaggerated its reaction towards the impact of Omicron after the new coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) variant was confirmed in the latter part of November.

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This amid consecutive shedding of the local shares since Thursday last week. 

The local stock market dipped below the 7,000-level on Monday.

“We’re not so concerned with the new variant,” Diokno said in a briefing Thursday. “I think there’s too much exaggeration on the impact of that.”

The Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) gained on this day’s trading on bargain hunting as investors stayed away from economies with confirmed Omicron variant.

So far, 25 countries have confirmed cases of the new Covid-19 variant. These include Australia, Austria, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Diokno added that the government should focus on its vaccination efforts amid the threats of the Omicron variant.

“I think the best thing to do really for the Philippines is vaccinate, vaccinate, vaccinate, and we have sufficient vaccines available,” he said.

On Wednesday, the government finished its three-day national vaccination drive aiming to boost inoculation in the country before the year ends. The free inoculation is extended until Friday.

The BSP chief vowed that the Monetary Board will continue pursuing a policy that will aid in the country’s economic recovery.

“We will continue our accommodative monetary policy until needed by the national government,” Diokno said.

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