The peso strengthened slightly against the dollar on Monday, Feb. 26, due to some demand for the peso ahead of US Federal Reserve (Fed) Chair Jerome H. Powell’s testimony.

The local unit closed Monday’s session at P51.86 against the greenback, three centavos stronger than its P51.89 close on Friday.

The peso traded stronger the whole day, opening the session at P51.80 per dollar. Its worst showing stood at P51.88, while yesterday’s intraday high was at P51.75.

Dollars traded on Monday slipped to $516 million from the $656.3 million booked the previous session.

Traders told BusinessWorld on Monday that the peso moved sideways on the back of profit-taking.

“The peso strengthened today amid profit-taking from the strong dollar last week,” a trader said.

Meanwhile, another trader attributed the peso’s strength on the local currency demand within the trading session.

“I think there’s some demand. I’m not sure what industry, probably oil or energy. That’s why the dollar-peso is supported,” the trader said.

A third trader said the pair traded within the range as market players are waiting for more clues as to where the next direction will be. — Karl Angelo N. Vidal