BOJ expects higher demand for Jamaican notes this Christmas
The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) is projecting a demand of approximately $18.1 billion for Jamaican notes and coins during the Christmas season.
This represents a 16.5 per cent increase over the Christmas period of 2017.
“There is normally a stronger demand for currency during the month of December, associated with increased spending over the holiday period. Financial institutions, therefore, request more currency from BOJ to satisfy this demand,” BOJ stated.
It added that the projected growth for December is “broadly consistent” with the 16.5 per cent growth recorded for December 2017 as well as the five-year average growth rate of 17.3 per cent for December.
In a statement issued on Thursday, the Central Bank said the increase in demand for the local currency could result in an estimated $128.1 billion being issued to financial institutions in order to meet the demand for cash from individuals and businesses at the end of December.
The projected currency stock of $128.1 billion at end-December 2018 represents annual growth of 15.5 per cent when compared with the 12.9 per cent recorded at December 2017.
As at December 14, 2017, the stock of currency in the hands of the public and in the vaults of financial institutions amounted to $114.1 billion.
Additionally, the projected acceleration in the growth in real currency demand for December 2018 is said to be consistent with the higher growth rate that has been evident between August and November 2018.
“Possibly associated with a strengthening in real GDP growth and employment over the second half of the year,” the BOJ highlighted.
“When the forecasted change in the general level of consumer prices is taken into account, the projected real growth in currency for 2018 is 10.5 per cent, which is higher than the real growth of 7.3 per cent for the previous year,” it continued.