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Colombia Yields Hold Near Two-Week High as Growth Tops Estimates

Sept. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Yields on Colombia’s peso bonds held near a two week high on reduced bets policy makers will cut borrowing costs after a report showed the Andean nation’s economy grew faster than expected in the second quarter.

The yield on Colombia’s 9.25 percent peso-denominated debt due in May 2014 was little changed at 4.95 percent, according to the central bank. It rose to 4.96 percent on Sept. 18, the highest since Sept. 5. The yield had fallen earlier after government reports yesterday fueled bets for an interest-rate cut.

Colombia’s economy grew 4.9 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier, its fastest pace in a year, the national statistics agency said today. The average estimate of 29 economists surveyed by Bloomberg was for growth of 4.2 percent.

“The economy is showing it doesn’t need further stimulus,” said Carmen Salcedo, an analyst at financial services holding company Corp. Financiera Colombiana, known as Corficolombiana. She predicts the central bank will leave the overnight lending rate unchanged at 4.75 percent through year-end.

Banco de la Republica will hold its next monetary policy meeting Sept. 28.

The peso erased an earlier decline, gaining 0.2 percent to 1,794.03 per U.S. dollar. It has gained 8.1 percent this year.

Colombia is worried about the strength of the peso, Finance Minister Mauricio Cardenas told reporters in Bogota today. The Treasury is ready to resume its intervention in the foreign exchange market to weaken the local currency, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrea Jaramillo in Bogota at ajaramillo1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net

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