The Philippines has been rated the riskiest among Southeast Asian stock markets buffeted by the US-China trade war and weakening local currencies.
In a report by Nikkei Asian Review, the Philippines was tagged with a minus 17.5 percent risk rating largely due to the failure of Finance Secretary Sonny Dominguez and the rest of the economic managers to tame inflation which has soared to its highest in nearly 10 years.
This is nearly double the minus nine percent risk rating Nikkei gave to Indonesia which is facing more serious problems with its rupiah.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas was forced to jack up benchmark interest rates to a seven-year high and this has been a drag on the Philippine Stock Exchange.
Nikkei has blamed President Rodrigo Duterte for the country’s vulnerability.
“His diplomatic approach — criticizing Europe and the U.S. while cozying up to China — is stirring unease in the international community,” said Nikkei.
“Duterte’s potentially closer relationship to business and the possibility of more inward-looking economic policies could deter foreign investment into the Philippines,” it added.
Here are Nikkei’s risk ratings for Southeast Asia:
1) Philippines (-17.5%)
2) Indonesia (-9%)
3) Vietnam (-8.5%)
4) Thailand (-7.1%)
5) Malaysia (-6.3%)