THE PESO strengthened further on Friday as some US lawmakers rejected a fresh stimulus program meant to stem the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and as the clinical trial for a possible vaccine was halted.
The local unit closed at P48.54 per dollar on Friday, rising three centavos from its P48.57 finish on Thursday, data from the Bankers Association of the Philippines showed.
The peso opened Friday’s session at P48.60 per dollar which was also its weakest showing for the day. Meanwhile, it reached an intraday high of P48.505 against the greenback.
Dollars traded climbed to $903.65 million on Friday from $548.96 million the day prior.
Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. Chief Economist Michael L. Ricafort said the peso appreciated after US senators from the Democratic Party rejected the proposed $500-billion funding for COVID-19 relief measures from Republican senators allied with President Donald J. Trump.
Meanwhile, a trader said the suspension of the clinical trial of AstraZeneca Plc for its vaccine against COVID-19 also continued to dampen investor sentiment. — KKTJ
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