About Per SE

Commentary and research on current events and public policy by economists from the University of the Philippines

Judges worth emulating

These regional trial court judges have done what their seniors in the judiciary, all the way up to the top, have failed to do. They have shown that justice can look political power in the eye and not blink.

Inflation, the peso, and overall spending

The rising prices are felt generally across sectors of the economy. However, they accelerate the problems of the most vulnerable, the poor and those whose incomes are not catching up with inflation.

The facts favor Trillanes

Reader, the “void ab initio” argument that has been used to justify the revocation of the amnesty granted in 2011 to Trillanes et al., is a reprise of the administration’s shamefully successful argument used to kick out Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno. Will it gain traction?

Philippine growth: Wages, employment, and poverty reduction

Two current World Bank studies dealing on the Philippine economy provide a useful framework for reviewing the status of economic development and of labor market issues in the country.

US trade wars: an update

The US trade wars that were initiated by President Trump early this mid-year are playing out their expected path. There is a high level of tension in the future of trade affecting the major powers, and as a consequence, on that of world trade in general.

Q2 growth: Old or New Normal

The 6% GDP growth in Q2 is a three-year low and has renewed the conversation of revert to the old. Not because the 6% growth is to be sneezed at but because by mid-2018 the rain clouds are starting to gather.

Impeaching justices the right thing to do

It may be a “suntok sa buwan” (hitting the moon—a useless effort) on their part, but, Reader, it is nevertheless the right thing to do. No matter how hard.

The fiscal cost of shifting to a federal structure

The draft federal constitution of the ConCom (Constitutional Committee) submitted to the Congress for adoption has huge budgetary implications on government operations which may likely cause a fiscal crisis.

Prayer for our country

On the 24 potential senatorial candidates of the PDP-Laban as presented to the President by Senator Koko Pimentel, I am concerned because: 1) out of the 24 potentials, 10 belong to political dynasties, six of whom are more than likely to be chosen as part of the final 12 candidates. What does this augur for...

The draft federal constitution: the case against a long, complex constitution

The draft federal constitution for the Philippines presented by the Constitutional Commission is a long, 82-page document, presented in single-spaced typed text, coming to a total of 30,516 words. Just for perspective, the document is 6.7 times longer than the original US Constitution that went into effect in 1789

Governance failure across the board

Get real Philippine Daily Inquirer, 11 August 2018   Undeniable fact: Philippine economic growth is slowing down. Growth rates last year were on the order of 6.7 percent. For the first half of 2018, it is 6.3 percent (6.6 percent in Q1 and 6.0 in Q2). Now, the target for 2018 under President Duterte’s Philippine...

The President is not above the law

The President’s firing of Overall Deputy Ombudsman Melchor Arthur Carandang has gotten in the way, and I must express outrage at this latest abuse of presidential power.