Peso climbs on data

Business World - - BANKING & FINANCE - Karl An­gelo N. Vi­dal

THE PESO strength­ened slightly against the dol­lar on Tues­day as the pair traded side­ways on the back of strong data from the US and China.

The lo­cal cur­rency ended yes­ter­day’s ses­sion at P52.05 against the green­back, two cen­tavos stronger than its P52.07-per-dol­lar fin­ish the pre­vi­ous day.

The peso opened the ses­sion slightly stronger at P52.05 ver­sus the green­back, which was also its best show­ing for the day. Mean­while, it dipped to as low as P52.11, data from the Bankers As­so­ci­a­tion of the Philip­pines showed.

Dol­lars traded de­clined to $427.3 mil­lion from the $518.1 mil­lion tal­lied on Mon­day.

A trader said in a phone in­ter­view yes­ter­day that the trad­ing ses­sion was “un­event­ful.”

“We traded within the range. Clearly, there’s no di­rec­tion whether to move higher or lower,” the trader said.

Mean­while, an­other trader at­trib­uted the side­ways move­ment to the up­beat data from the US and China.

“The peso went side­ways to­day as the US re­ported stronger re­tail sales yes­ter­day and China post­ing sus­tained growth for the first quar­ter this year this morn­ing,” the trader said in an e-mail on Tues­day.

Reuters re­ported that US re­tail sales re­bounded in March af­ter three months of de­cline as Amer­i­cans pur­chased mo­tor ve­hi­cles and other big-ticket items.

Mean­while, China’s econ­omy grew 6.8% in the first quar­ter, slightly bet­ter than ex­pected, driven by strong con­sumer de­mand, healthy ex­ports as well as ro­bust prop­erty in­vest­ment, also ac­cord­ing to a Reuters re­port.

“[These left] mar­kets in­de­ci­sive as the two world’s largest economies seem­ingly came un­scathed de­spite trade war rhetoric in the past few months,” the trader added.

For to­day, the sec­ond trader sees the peso mov­ing be­tween P51.95 and P52.15 ver­sus the dol­lar, while the first trader gave a slightly nar­row range of P52 and P52.15.

“The lo­cal cur­rency is likely to strengthen amid ex­pec­ta­tions of stronger Eu­ro­zone in­fla­tion for March,” the sec­ond trader noted.

In­vestors will also look at US hous­ing starts data was re­leased overnight, the first trader said, not­ing that this may “not be es­sen­tial.” •

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