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Peso weakens after BSP remarks on continued easy policy

Peso weakens after BSP remarks on continued easy policy

The peso closed weaker against the dollar Friday after the central bank assured that policy rates will remain low for as long as needed to support the economic recovery.

The peso closed at P48.43 to the dollar against its Thursday close of P48.38, according to the Bankers Association of the Philippines (BAP).

Opening at P48.42, the peso posted a low of P48.44 in rangebound trading. Other than the opening level, the intraday high was 48.43.

Week-on-week, the peso weakened from P47.70 per dollar on June 11.

Dollar volume was $1.072 billion, from $1.789 billion the day before.

A trader attributed the weaker peso to the recent assurance from the central bank governor Benjamin E. Diokno that the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will keep policy rates low for as long as necessary to support the economy.

Mr. Diokno said in a briefing Thursday that the accommodative monetary stance will remain until the recovery gains traction.

The Monetary Board of the BSP is set to mee on June 24 to review its current policy stance.

Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said expectations that goods imports will rebound further caused the peso to weaken recently, with a looser quarantine regime expected to stimulate economic activity.

Elevated oil prices and the bourse’s continued decline due to profit-taking also helped account for the peso’s weakness Friday.

The government eased quarantine restrictions in Metro Manila and nearby provinces for the rest of the month after new coronavirus cases stabilized at around 6,000 a day. — Beatrice M. Laforga

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