Mexico sees peso at 3-year low, offers $30 billion coverage

The Mexican peso has sunk to a 3-year low against the U.S. dollar, prompting the country's central bank to increase auctions of up to $30 billion in peso coverage contracts

MEXICO CITY -- The Mexican peso sank to a 3-year low against the U.S. dollar, prompting the country's central bank to increase auctions of peso coverage contracts to up to $30 billion.

The peso closed Monday at an inter-bank rate of 21.18 to $1, the lowest rate since January 26, 2017.

The central bank said Monday it was increasing the total amount available for auctions of peso coverage from the previous $20 billion to $30 billion “to maintain the orderly functioning of exchange markets.”

The peso had traded as high as 18.57 to $1 just three weeks ago on Feb. 17.

The peso had largely appreciated against the dollar since President Andrés Manuel López Obrador took office, a fact he often pointed to with pride.

López Obrador said Monday that “there is a drop in oil prices that affects us, that devalued the peso, but we think we are going to recover.”