Chile’s peso gained for a third day as copper rose to a five-week high on speculation officials will try to stimulate growth in the U.S. and China.
The currency appreciated 0.3 percent to 480.38 per U.S. dollar, after earlier strengthening through 480 per dollar for the first time since Aug. 14. The peso has rallied from a low of 486.24 per dollar reached on Aug. 20. Copper for December delivery rose as much as 1.6 percent on the Comex in New York to $3.517 a pound.
The U.S. dollar dropped against most of its major counterparts after Federal Reserve minutes released yesterday showed that many members favored more stimulus unless the economic recovery accelerates. People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan said yesterday adjustments to interest rates and banks’ reserve requirements are still possible. China is the biggest buyer of Chilean copper, which makes up more than half the country’s exports.
“The expectation of QE3 or Treasury buying or more stimulus in China means that commodities have rebounded,” said Cristian Donoso, a trader at Banchile Corredores de Bolsa in Santiago, referring to a third round of bond purchases known as quantitative easing. “It’s time to sell dollars.”
Should the peso appreciate through 479 per dollar, it may jump to 473 or 474 per dollar, Donoso said.
International investors in the Chilean peso forwards market had an $8.6 billion short peso position on Aug. 21. Local investors, which exclude banks and brokers, had a $17 billion long peso position, the highest since Aug. 2, according to central bank data published today.
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