• Peso weakens to 5-month low

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    The peso traded at its weakest level in nearly five months against the US dollar on Friday after the latest jobs data in the United States supported the greenback and low headline inflation rate in the Philippines weighed on the local currency’s appeal.

    The local unit lost 6 centavos to close at P44.87 to $1 from P44.81 on Thursday.

    Friday’s close was the lowest finish for the peso since January 9 this year, when it settled at P44.95.

    An analyst said the US dollar strength can be traced to better-than-expected US jobs data, which bolsters the case for an early Fed rate hike.

    Initial jobless claims in the US reached 276,000, short of the expected 278,000 claims.

    On the Philippine front, a lower-than-expected 1.6 percent headline inflation print for May, the lowest in 20 years, is seen limiting the chances of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas hiking its key interest rates for the time being, the analyst added.

    The peso opened at P44.90 to $1 on the Philippine Dealing System (PDS) on Friday before trading between P44.85 and P45.

    Total volume transacted on the PDS rose to $670.700 million from $619.250 million in previous trade.

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