EMERGING MARKETS-Chilean stocks down on foreign sales; Petrobras supports Bovespa

martes 20 de mayo de 2014 14:42 GYT

By Asher Levine and Anthony Esposito
    SAO PAULO/SANTIAGO, May 20 (Reuters) - Chilean stocks
dropped on Tuesday as weak earnings spurred  foreigners to sell
shares in a low-volume session, while the nation's currency
weakened nearly 1 percent, driven by lower copper prices and
higher demand for dollars ahead of a market holiday.
    Brazilian and Mexican stocks both posted modest gains,
though not enough to keep the broader MSCI Latin American stock
index in positive territory.
    Chile's blue-chip IPSA index slid 1.46 percent, with
commodities-linked companies falling hardest in the world's top
copper producer.
    Shares in CAP dropped 2.6 percent after the
iron-ore and steel producer posted disappointing results late
Monday night, and heavy-weight Empresas Copec, Chile's
largest industrial conglomerate, slipped 2.78 percent on
expectations it will post weak earnings later this week, a
trader said.
    The Chilean peso weakened its most in over a month as
the price for copper, the country's main export, sank
its most in nearly two weeks. 
    Chile's market will be closed on Wednesday for the Navy Day
holiday. Dollar demand tends to rise the day before market
holidays as traders look to close positions, analysts said.  
    Elsewhere in the region, Brazil's Bovespa stock index
 made a partial rebound from Monday's loss, driven by a
1.5 percent gain in preferred shares of state-controlled oil
firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA, known as Petrobras.
    Analysts said some investors may be upping their bets on the
stock in anticipation of a closely watched electoral poll due
Thursday. Recent polls showing a decline in President Dilma
Rousseff's approval rating ahead of October's election have
driven big gains in the stock as shareholders hold out hope for
a more market-friendly administration. 
    Shares of planemaker Embraer SA rose over 2
percent after the company announced a $3.26 billion order from
Brazil's Air Force. 
    Mexican stocks edged higher, led by bargain-hunting for
shares of telecommunications firm America Movil a day
after the stock slid 4 percent.
    In currency markets, Brazil's real and Mexico's peso
 both weakened about 0.4 percent against the dollar, as
political unrest in Thailand and concern over Chinese economic
growth led to a decline in global risk appetite.
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1739 GMT:
 Stock indexes                             daily %     YTD %
                               Latest       change    change
 MSCI Emerging Markets           1032.48     -0.28      3.27
 MSCI LatAm                      3354.79     -0.26      5.08
 Brazil Bovespa                 53546.25      0.36      3.96
 Mexico IPC                     41896.22      0.13     -1.94
 Chile IPSA                      3884.71     -1.28      5.02
 Chile IGPA                     19046.13     -1.08      4.49
 Argentina MerVal                7251.98      1.33     34.52
 Colombia IGBC                  13472.91     -1.22      3.07
 Peru IGRA                      15606.11     -0.41     -0.94
 Venezuela IBC                   2189.78      2.03    -19.98
 Currencies                                daily %     YTD %
                                            change    change
 Brazil real                      2.2135     -0.26      6.47
 Mexico peso                     12.9499     -0.35      0.62
 Chile peso                        552.8     -0.90     -4.83
 Colombia peso                   1919.99     -0.10      0.63
 Peru sol                          2.792     -0.14      0.04
 Argentina peso (interbank)       8.0600     -0.03    -19.45
 Argentina peso (parallel)         11.58     -2.33    -13.64
 (Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)