Gov’t to borrow P30 B from small investors

Chino S. Leyco

The national government plans to borrow from small investors this month through the sale of retail Treasury bonds (RTB), the Bureau of the Treasury announced.

In a statement, the Treasury bureau said the government plans to sell at least P30 billion worth of RTBs that would mature in five-and-a-half years. The bonds or IOUs would be auctioned off on Nov. 16.

The RTB offer period runs from Tuesday until Nov. 26, which will be sold in multiples of P5,000.

The agency said it would cancel the regular auction of five- and seven-year T-bonds scheduled on Nov. 16 and Nov. 23, respectively, to give way to the RTB sale.

Moreover, existing holders of RTBs maturing on Jan. 19 and 26, 2022 can also swap their holdings for the new 2027 retail bonds.

The last time the government sold debt to retail investors was last February, during which it borrowed P463.3 billion of the three-year papers, the second-biggest RTB sale on record.

The sale of RTBs form part of the government’s objective of encouraging Filipinos to save by lending their excess money to the government in exchange for a safe return on their investment.

In October, the Treasury bureau had raised $1.59 billion through the sale of maiden onshore retail dollar bonds (RDBs).

The five-year and 10-year RDBs carried coupons of 1.375 percent and 2.250 percent, respectively. They were offered in minimum investments of $300 and multiples of $100 thereafter.

The Duterte administration’s maiden RDB sale followed the $3 billion global bonds sold in June, $2.5 billion euro-denominated bonds in April, and $500 million yen-denominated “Samurai” bonds in March.

This year, the government plans to borrow P3 trillion to bridge its projected budget deficit. As of May, gross financing stood at P1.713 trillion.

Source: Manila Bulletin (