Argentina ETFs Pop After Central Bank Strengthens Peso

Argentina country-specific ETFs climbed Tuesday after the Argentinian central bank moved to shore up its currency, lifting the peso to its biggest gain in six weeks.

On Tuesday, the Global X MSCI Argentina ETF (NYSEArca: ARGT) increased 4.6% and the iShares MSCI Argentina and Global Exposure ETF (BATS: AGT) rose 3.0%. The Argentina markets have been experiencing an awful year, with ARGT down 24.8% and AGT 24.7% lower year-to-date.

Argentina’s central bank moved to diminish the number of pesos circulating in the economy by raising reserve requirements for banks, a measure that will sop up 60 billion pesos, or $2.1 billion, in liquidity, Bloomberg reports.

“The increase in reserve requirements today will apply only to pesos reserves and will be added to another increase of 3 percentage points that went into effect on June 18 and to the additional 2 percentage points that will come into effect on July 18,” the statement said.

Policy makers also hiked rates on local central bank notes, or also known as Lebacs, due over the next few months to pay yields as high as 52%.

U.S. Dollar Against Argentina Peso

The U.S. dollar depreciated 0.7% against the Argentina peso to ARS$28.094 Tuesday. The peso has depreciated 34% this year for the worst performance among emerging market currencies.