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Peso ends flat vs dollar ahead of Fed decision

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THE PESO was steady against the dollar on Wednesday as market participants stayed on the sidelines ahead of the conclusion of US Federal Reserve meeting.

The local unit closed yesterday’s session at P50.89 versus the greenback, flat from its Tuesday finish.

The peso opened the session at P50.82 against the dollar, climbing to as high as P50.81 intraday. Meanwhile, its worst showing stood at P50.92 versus the greenback.

Trading volume thinned to $885.57 million from the $1.124 billion that switched hands the previous day.

Traders interviewed yesterday said the peso moved sideways as market players stayed on the sidelines ahead of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting’s conclusion.

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“Actually, the dollar-peso just consolidated. It closed at the same level. There was not much meaningful flow to try to go for a stronger dollar-peso. Still the same, we’re waiting for the Fed’s decision,” a trader said in a phone interview.

The Fed was widely expected to trim rates by at least 25 basis points (bp) during the meeting of its policy-setting FOMC on July 30-31.

“I think the perception is for a 25-bp cut. Anything that is different from a 25-bp cut will entail a reaction from the market,” the trader said.

Another trader added that the peso moved within a tight range yesterday as players also anticipated signals for more policy easing from the Fed this year.

“I think the market was pricing a cut tonight and two more cuts for the year. The big question now is will they cut more before the year ends,” the second trader said.

For today, the first trader expects the peso to move between P50.80 and P51.20 versus the dollar, while the other gave a P50.80-P51 range. — KANV

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