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Peru’s sol rose to its strongest level in 15 years after mining companies bought the currency to pay taxes and profit-sharing bonuses.
The sol gained 0.2 percent to 2.6735 per U.S. dollar at today’s close, from 2.6778 yesterday, according to Deutsche Bank AG’s local unit. That’s the strongest level since October 1997, data from Peru’s financial regulator compiled by Bloomberg shows.
Mining companies are bringing in dollars to pay local taxes next month and distribute bonuses to workers under profit- sharing agreements, said Mario Guerrero, an economist at Scotiabank Peru in Lima.
“It’s a period when there is more pressure on the currency to strengthen,” Guerrero said. “A relative calm has returned to global markets, which supports the view the sol will continue to appreciate,” encouraging companies to bring forward their purchases, he said.
The central bank bought $118 million in the spot market today to slow gains in the sol. It paid an average 2.6754 soles per dollar, the bank said on its website. The bank has purchased $3.68 billion this year, surpassing the $3.51 billion it purchased in all of 2011.
Local mutual funds and overseas investors sold dollars today mainly in the forwards market while mining companies and banks sold on the spot, said Antonio Diaz, a trader at Banco Internacional del Peru.
“Banks have to sell to the central bank or to clients but the majority of clients are looking to sell dollars too,” Diaz said.
The yield on the nation’s benchmark 7.84 percent sol- denominated bond due August 2020 fell three basis points, or 0.03 percentage point, to 5.48 percent at 1:48 p.m. in Lima, according to prices compiled by Bloomberg. The security’s price rose 0.18 centimo to 115.77 centimos per sol.
Cia. de Minas Buenaventura SAA expects construction of its $4.8 billion gold joint venture with Newmont Mining Corp. (NEM) to resume by April after the project was stalled by environmental protests in November, Buenaventura Chief Executive Officer Roque Benavides said today.
Construction of what will be the country’s biggest investment project should restart after a 40-day environmental review by international consultants is concluded, he said on a conference call with analysts.
Foreign direct investment in the Andean nation rose 4.5 percent to a record $7.66 billion last year, the central bank said yesterday.
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