Bloomberg News

Colombia Peso Falls From Seven-Month High on China Growth Report

March 12, 2012

Colombia’s peso fell from a seven- month high after Chinese economic data pointed to weaker growth, signaling reduced demand for the South American country’s exports.

The peso fell 0.1 percent to 1,763.90 per U.S. dollar, from 1,762.35 on March 9 when it touched 1,759.60, the strongest intraday level since July 27. The peso has jumped 9.3 percent in the last three months, the second-best performance among a basket of 25 emerging-market currencies tracked by Bloomberg behind Poland’s zloty.

Global stocks fell as China had the biggest trade deficit last month in at least 22 years, the weakest January-February factory-production gain since 2009, and retail sales were below the median economist estimate, government data showed March 9 and 10. China is Colombia’s second-biggest trading partner. In January it bought 10 percent of the nation’s exports, while the U.S. bought 36 percent.

“China is becoming more and more relevant to Colombia, especially in terms of its commodity exports,” said Camilo Perez, head analyst at Banco de Bogota, the nation’s second- biggest bank. Data from China is hurting risk appetite today, leading to a weaker peso and “giving investors a good excuse to take profit” on Colombia’s peso bonds, known as TES, said Perez.

The yield on Colombia’s 10 percent peso-denominated debt due July 2024 rose one basis point, or 0.01 percentage point, to 7.22 percent, according to the central bank. The bond’s price fell 0.128 centavo to 122.1640 centavos per peso.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrea Jaramillo in Bogota at ajaramillo1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net


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