Peso weakens ahead of new quarantine measures

peso weakens ahead of new quarantine measures - Peso weakens ahead of new quarantine measures

THE PESO weakened on Monday as the market waits for the government’s announcement of quarantine measures for next month.

The local unit closed at P48.51 versus the dollar on Monday, down by five centavos from its P48.46 finish on Friday.

The peso opened Monday’s session at P48.45 against the greenback. It reached an intraday high of P48.41 and hit a low at P48.52 versus the dollar.

Dollars traded slid to $490.35 million on Monday from Friday’s $713.5 million.

A trader said the peso declined as investors stayed on the sidelines ahead of the announcement of quarantine measures for October, which was expected Monday night.

“There is some market caution ahead of this week’s announcement of new quarantine protocols beyond September 30,” the trader said in an e-mail.

Meanwhile, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said in a text message that the dollar strengthened following remarks from US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on a stimulus deal with the US Treasury department.

Ms. Pelosi, the top Democrat in Congress, said on Sunday she thinks a deal can be reached with the White House on a coronavirus relief package and that talks were continuing, Reuters reported.

“We are having our conversations. And when I have a conversation with the administration, it is in good faith,” Ms. Pelosi said on CNN. “I trust (Treasury) Secretary (Steve) Mnuchin to represent something that can reach a solution. And I believe we can come to an agreement.”

Formal talks between Ms. Pelosi, Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer, Mr. Mnuchin and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows aimed at hammering out a relief package broke down on Aug. 7 with the two sides far apart. Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Mnuchin have since spoken by phone.

With formal COVID-19 relief talks stalled for weeks, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal on Thursday said Democratic lawmakers were starting to draft a bill totaling at least $2.2 trillion.

For today, the trader expects the peso to range from P48.40 to P48.60 versus the dollar while Mr. Ricafort sees the local currency moving from P48.45 to P48.60. — KKTJ with Reuters

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