Philippine Peso Has First Weekly Gain in a Month on Remittances

The Philippine peso completed its first weekly gain in a month on speculation Filipinos living abroad are sending more money home ahead of the year-end.

Remittances from the 9 million Filipinos working overseas normally peak in the weeks before Christmas, according to Joric Nazario, a treasurer at the Philippine Veterans Bank in Manila. Concern the central bank is capping the supply of dollars in the local market by allowing foreign-currency swaps to mature is limiting gains, he said.

“Around this time, we should really be seeing robust remittances,” Nazario said. “The central bank has found a very good tool to cap dollar supply by not rolling over its forward books. The peso’s been moving in a band for a while.”

The peso rose 0.8 percent this week to 43.905 per dollar this week as of the 4 p.m. close of trading in Manila, according to inter-dealer broker Tullett Prebon Plc. The currency dropped 0.1 percent from yesterday.

The local currency will probably end the year between 43 and 43.50, Nazario said. The central bank “seems comfortable” with an exchange rate of 43.60 to 44.10, he said.

Money sent home by overseas Filipinos rose 10.6 percent in September from a year earlier to $1.6 billion, according to the central bank. The data for October are due on Dec. 15.

Five-year local-currency bonds were little changed this week after the government set minimum coupons for the new 10-and 25-year securities it will issue in a bond exchange.

The yield on the 7 percent securities due January 2016 was 4.74 percent from 4.75 percent on Nov. 26, according to Tradition Financial Services. The rate rose three basis points from yesterday.

To contact the reporter on this story: Clarissa Batino in Manila at cbatino@bloomberg.net. To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Regan at jregan19@bloomberg.net.

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