Peso weakens on foreign selling at stock market

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THE PESO weakened versus the dollar on Friday to go back to the P52-per-dollar level after some net foreign selling at the stock market.

The local currency closed at P52.04 against the greenback on Friday, 30 centavos weaker than Thursday’s P51.74 versus the dollar.

The peso opened the session stronger at P51.68 against the dollar. It hit a high of P51.66 but closed at its intraday low.

Trading volume increased to $983.99 from the $714.4 million that switched hands in the previous session.

A trader said the peso’s decline was a healthy correction.

“The peso closed weaker today…but still among the strongest in a month and also still among the strongest in nearly 13 months, after some net foreign selling at the local stock market,” the trader send in a text message on Friday.

Shares continued to move higher on Friday despite thin trading as investors waited for new catalysts that could boost the stock market.

The bellwether Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) firmed up 0.3% or 24.12 points to close at 7,983.98 on Friday. The broader all shares index also increased 0.12% or 5.92 points to 4,890.79.

Foreign investors were net sellers for the third straight session on Friday at P573.32 million, higher than Thursday’s P425.29 million.

The trader US jobs data scheduled for release Friday night could affect peso trading next week. Washington’s continued trade tensions with China and Mexico may also affect market sentiment, the trader said. — K.E.S. Franco