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Argentine central bank exempts banks from cash minimum compliance in May

Banco Central de la República Argentina has excluded commercial banks from complying with the minimum peso-denominated cash deposits in May to encourage them to buy more of its short-term debt securities, known as LEBACs, El Cronista reported.

Analysts said the move is a good strategy to stem further rise in the dollar. Giving entities more liquidity to participate in the central bank's bid is a good measure, although it should likewise be transitory, El Cronista cited the analysts as saying.

Last week, commercial banks bought 76.50 billion pesos in LEBACs while the central bank repurchased about 32.00 billion pesos.

Earlier in May, the Argentine central bank raised its monetary policy rate to a record 40% as it looks to stave off a rapid depreciation of the peso.

As of May 14, US$1 was equivalent to 24.56 Argentine pesos.