Peso declines most in two weeks

Colombia’s peso fell the most in two weeks on concern the central bank will buy dollars in the spot market to ease gains in the currency’s world-beating rally.

The peso weakened 0.5 percent to 1,826.85 per dollar at 3:48 p.m. New York time, from 1,817.48 on Aug. 27. The currency has risen 11.9 percent this year, the best performance among all currencies tracked by Bloomberg. It is up 0.9 percent in August.

Colombia’s central bank may intervene in the currency market if the peso strengthens to more than 1,800 per dollar, Camilo Perez, head analyst at Banco de Bogota SA, Colombia’s second-biggest lender, said today. Central bank chief Jose Dario Uribe said Aug. 20 that Banco de la Republica will buy dollars in the spot market when it deems it “appropriate.”

“There’s still a latent concern in people’s minds about a possible currency intervention,” Perez said in a telephone interview. “A value of 1,800 has a psychological connection and people don’t want to pressure the exchange rate too much because of the possible intervention.”

The yield on the benchmark 11 percent bonds due 2020 fell four basis points, or 0.04 percentage point, to 7.08 percent, according to Colombia’s stock exchange. The bond’s price rose 0.311 centavo to 127.202 centavos per peso.

Colombia, the largest producer of mild Arabica coffee after Brazil, has said the South American country will attract about $10 billion in foreign direct investment this year, boosting the value of the peso.

Arabica coffee gained for the third straight session. The commodity has risen 32 percent this year. (Nathan Gill/ Bloomberg)

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