Mutual Funds are UP: First Metro leads the pack with a yield of 18% (year-to-date)with the others, not too far behind. It simply means that an investment made at the start of the year would have already earned 18% of its original value, by now.
The Philippine currency is UP: The peso is close to breaking below PhP 48 to a dollar.
The Stock Market index is close to attaining an all time (Pre Asian Crisis level).
What does it actually say? The continued success of the country's Mutual Funds will most probably lure more foreign (short term investments) into the country. With the american mutual funds market hitting an average of only 10% for the entire 2006, more hot money can be expected to come in. If this momentum continues, coupled with a sustained increase in OFW (overseas foreign workers) remittances, and the absence of a sharply negative occurence in all the other sectors of the economy, the US dollar will most likely continue to decline.
Does it mean that the economy will largely be better off? Probably.
An increase in remittances will hopefully translate to better quality of life for the country's poor. And with the elections in the offing, politicians are expected to spend a lot of money, which will hopefully translate to better livelihood for small printing presses, provincial radio stations, people employed by the political parties, etc..
Though it is largely prohibited, the election season will probably see a rise in the infrastructure projects. It is very likely that more roads benefitting the small farmers/entrepreneurs will be built this year, giving the lesser privileged more hope, at the very least.
Let us hope that the elections will generally turnout to be peaceful. Unrest that may follow, can turn the country into a "No mans land".
One thing is for sure, though, the dollar earners (exporters, BPO firms, etc.) are not very happy with the continued decline in the value of the US dollar.