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  • DOE Chief, 6 others re-appointed to posts                 President Aquino has reappointed Sec. Carlos Jericho Petilla as energy secretary. Sec. Petilla is the only member of the Aquino Cabinet who has not been confirmed by the Commission on Appointments (CA). Also reappointed were Mr. Arthur Lim as member of the Commission on Elections and Ms. Nieves Osorio as member of the Civil Service Commission. 6 ambassadors were issued new appointments: Ms. Mary Jo Aragon (Thailand and United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific), Ms. Maria Zenaida Angara Collinson (Austria, Croatia, Slovenia, and the Slovak Republic), Ms. Maria Teresita Daza (India and Nepal), Mr. Alfonso Ver (Bahrain), Mr. Pedro Renato Villa (Kuwait), and Ms. Lourdes Yparraguierre (United Nations in New York). The CA bypassed the appointees when Congress went on its month-long Christmas break last Dec. 19, prompting President Aquino to reappoint them. Their papers have been submitted to the CA.  Not in the list of appointees Malacañang has sent to the appointments commission for confirmation is acting Health Secretary Janette Garin, who has replaced resigned secretary Enrique Ona.
  • Net outflow posted for hot money                                 Foreign portfolio investments posted a net outflow last year -- a turnaround from 2013’s inflows -- in the face of the move by the US Federal Reserve (Fed) to gradually terminate its massive bond-buying stimulus, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) yesterday reported. Hot money -- called so given the ease by which these enter and leave the country -- posted a net outflow of $310 million last year, which was a turnaround from the $4.224-billion net inflow seen at end-2013. “The investment flows reflected investor reaction to the tapering of the quantitative easing program of the United States,” BSP said in a statement. Last October, the Fed ended its massive asset purchasing program that had kept the world’s biggest economy afloat since the 2008 global financial crisis. Market volatility is expected to persist as investors try to second-guess the Fed’s next step: an increase in policy rate.

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