Peso flat vs. dollar in rangebound trading

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THE peso ended flat against the dollar on Friday after the release of the minutes of the June meeting of the US Federal Reserve.

The peso ended Friday’s session at P53.42 against the dollar, unchanged from its close on Thursday.

The peso opened the session at P53.41, while its intraday high stood at P53.36. Its worst showing for the day was at P53.46.

Dollar volume was $506.5 million, slightly lower than the $520.5 million that changed hands yesterday.

A trader said that the peso traded “within a very tight range” on Friday following the minutes of the Fed’s rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).

“The peso ended flat as it traded within a very tight range. The release of the Fed minutes was not that significant,” the trader said in a phone interview.

US central bankers said during the June FOMC meeting expressed concerns that global trade tensions could hit the US economy that by most measures indicated strong performance, Reuters reported.

Many policymakers noted that the gradual hikes could take federal funds rate above the neutral level some time next year.

During its June 12-13 meeting, the Fed raised its benchmark rates by a quarter of a percentage point, the second adjustment for the year, on the back of strong economy. Federal rates are now in a range of 1.5-1.75%.

“The FOMC minutes didn’t move the market that much,” the trader said.

He added that the market is waiting for retaliatory action from China in its trade war with the US.

President Donald J. Trump has imposed tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese imports.

The trader added that the market will also await the non-farm payrolls data in the US to be released late Friday, Manila time. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal