World Markets

Argentine peso strengthens after new cenbank measures to curb inflation

BUENOS AIRES, April 17 () - Argentina's peso strengthened 1 percent on Wednesday to 41.95 per U.S. dollar, traders said, after opening flat following the central bank's new measures to temper high inflation plaguing the country's economy, traders said.

The peso opened at 42.40 per U.S. dollar before the slight uptick just minutes later.

Consumer prices in Argentina rose 4.7 percent in March, the government statistics agency reported on Tuesday, bringing inflation to 11.8 percent so far in 2019. It was the third straight month inflation increased.

Argentine central bank chief Guido Sandleris said the bank would reinforce the "contractionary bias" of monetary policy, which includes freezing a non-intervention peso trading range until year-end and holding off from buying dollars to rein in the currency if it strengthens outside the range until the end of June.

Sandleris said the central bank expected the pace of inflation would begin to ease from April.

Consumer prices in Argentina leapt 47.6 percent in 2018, which analysts said was the highest annual rate in nearly three decades. The South American country has seen a third of its population fall into poverty, sky-high interest rates and a volatile peso currency.

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