Peso April 22 2022
Image Credit: Gulf News / Jay Hilotin (Source: xe.com)

Highlights

  • Downward pressure seen on peso on increased spending in the runup to the May 9 general elections.
  • As economy re-opens, greater demand for imports could keep demand for dollars up.
  • Peso has lost 28% of  its value against US$ in the last 10 years.

Manila: The Philippine peso continued its decline this week, finishing at 52.43 against the dollar on Friday (10.02 UTC, April 22), though it was a slight gain on Thursday’s close of 52.44, latest data show.

The Bangko Sentral Pilipinas was selling the greenback for 52.60 and buying at 52.10 per $1 Friday. The UAE dirham to peso rate was at Php14.15: Dh1 on Friday, according to Lulu Money. Latest forex/gold rates are here.

The Asian currency has already declined by nearly 10% in the last 10 months — giving a virtual pay raise for those remitting money home from overseas or earning in dollars.

In the last 30 days, remitters such as overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), have gained a headway as the peso depreciation continued, from a 30-day high of 51.346 to a low of 52.55.

Election spending, import bills

Earlier, analysts had projected a Php51-52 vs $1 exchange rate for 2022. The level been breached in the first quarter.

Now, they see the peso sliding further down from that level, owing to increased spending in the run-up to the May 9 general elections. Moreover, the economy’s reopening and higher import receipts could play into the foreign exchange scene. and keeping the downward pressure on the peso.

An increase in imports, as well as increased infrastructure spending alongside reconstruction of areas devastated by a recent super-typhoon, alongslide a spike in imports could raise the domestic demand for US dollars.

These factors could keep the downward pressure on the peso, though a boost export earnings, higher OFW remittances and foreign direct investments could potentially provide a counter-balance.

In the last 10 months, the peso has already depreciated by nearly Php5 against the US currency, as it stood at Php47.64 vs $1 on June 7, 2021.

In the last 10 years, the peso has seen a 28% depreciation — equivalent to Php12 — since January 31, 2013, when it stood at Php40.65 vs. $1.

This week, most Asian currencies faced a bearish mood, as several regional central banks followed the US Federal Reserve’s lead in tightening monetary policies to curb inflation.

Investors are keeping an eye out on surging commodity prices as well as US Treasury bills, as 10-year yield posted its highest since 2018 — hitting 2.88 per cent.

Stocks slide

Meanwhile, the Philippine Stock Exchange index (PSEi) closed 0.89 per cent lower, or 62.9 points, to 6,998.59 on Friday (April 22, 2022).

The All Shares board dipped 0.82 per cent, or 30.94 points, to 3,721.60 points. Decliners led advancers, at 100 to 79, while 44 shares were unchanged. The Industrial sector led the decliners, dropping 1.90 per cent, followed by Property stocks, which was down 1.48 per cent. Other sectoral indices also dropped: Financials, by 0.63 per cent; Holding Firms, 0.35 per cent; Mining and Oil, 0.64 per cent; and Services, by 0.19 per cent.

Volume reached 450 million in 55,767 trades, valued at PhpP4.8 billion.