Colombian stocks continued a streak of record highs Monday, boosted by shares of key oil companies in the country’s blue-chip index, while the peso was mostly flat as pressure continued to mount on the central bank to rein in the currency.
The IGBC index, the benchmark for the country, posted a 1.12% surge and closed at 15405.39 points. The index has jumped 32.7% this year, bolstered by investors’ appetite for emerging-market assets.
The biggest gainers Monday included state-oil firm Ecopetrol SA, which climbed 1.23% to COP4,105 and Toronto-listed oil company Pacific Rubiales, which rose 1.51% to COP53,800.
Grupo Aval, which agreed earlier this year to purchase BAC-Credomatic in Central America for $1.45 billion, rose 6.76% to COP1,580.
The Colombian peso, meanwhile, was mostly flat and closed at COP1,785.65 to the dollar after opening at COP1,785.85. A group of business federations released Monday an open letter, calling on the government and the central bank to bolster their measures against the peso’s surge. The currency has gained 13% against the dollar so far this year.
The central bank has been intervening in the foreign exchange market in a bid to push down the peso. Monday, the central bank bought $20 million at a rate of COP1,786.
The central bank said in a statement that in September it bought $240 million in spot market auctions. The central bank’s net currency purchases for the first nine months of the year stand at $1.84 billion.
The yield on the benchmark, peso-denominated bond, closed at 6.967% after opening at 6.951%. (Darcy Crow / Dow Jones Newswires)