Colombia’s central bank raised the key lending rate a quarter percentage point to 9.75 percent on February 22, luring capital to the fixed-income market, in an effort to stem inflation. The 6.75 percent rate differential between Colombian and U.S. benchmark rates is the widest since January 2002.The peso advanced to its strongest level since January 2000, gaining 0.9 percent to 1,869.85 per dollar at 4:45 p.m. in New York, according to the Colombian foreign-exchange electronic transactions system, known as SET-FX. The peso’s 7.9 percent advance this year is the second-biggest after the Czech koruna among 26 emerging market currencies tracked by Bloomberg.
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