THE PESO appreciated against the greenback on Wednesday on the back of remittance flows for the holiday season.

The local unit closed at P48.07 per dollar, gaining 2.5 centavos from its P48.095 finish on Tuesday, data from the Bankers Association of the Philippines showed.

It also appreciated by 1.5 centavos against its P48.085 per dollar finish on Friday. Financial markets are closed on Dec. 24 and 25 for the Christmas holidays.

The peso started Wednesday’s session at P48.075 versus the dollar. Its weakest showing was at P48.085 while its intraday best was at P48.045 against the greenback.

Dollars traded increased to $679.2 million on Wednesday from $457.4 million on Tuesday.

The stronger peso was fuelled by the seasonal surge in remittances ahead of Christmas, Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said.

Meanwhile, a trader said the peso gained on the back of profit-taking.

“The peso closed stronger as market participants profited from the initial weakness in the morning trade following news that President [Donald J.] Trump might not sign the stimulus bill recently endorsed by the US Congress,” the trader said in an e-mail.

In a video posted through his Twitter account, Mr. Trump said the current version of the bill “is much different than anticipated,” calling it a “disgrace,” Reuters reported.

Mr. Trump said he wants legislators to raise the stimulus check amounts to $2,000 for individuals or $4,000 for couples from the bill’s provision of a “ridiculously low” $600 for individuals. — LWTN with Reuters