EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil stocks gain on election outlook, ECB
SAO PAULO, Aug 25 (Reuters) - Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index tracked global markets higher on Monday, driven by the outlook for stimulus measures from the European Central Bank (ECB) and market positioning over the outcome of an upcoming presidential electoral poll. The broader MSCI Latin American stock index rose for the seventh session in eight, while the region's currencies were mostly stable or weaker against the dollar. ECB President Mario Draghi on Friday suggested a major shift in the bank's policy away from a focus on austerity toward reviving growth, helping boost risk appetite among global investors. The Bovespa index erased the previous session's losses, led by an over 3 percent rise in preferred shares of state-run oil producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA. Investors were attuned to market chatter about the outcome of an electoral poll due to be released this week. The market typically rises when President Dilma Rousseff loses support, as investors have been critical of her administration's management of the economy and state-run companies in particular. "There is talk that (opposition candidate) Marina Silva will gain in the poll," said Ariovaldo Santos, a trader with H.Commcor in Sao Paulo. "You also have the outlook for stimulus in Europe and strong performance in the U.S. market, so we are riding along on that movement." Mexico's IPC index rose 0.27 percent, hitting its highest level in over six months. Foreigners have boosted their bets on equities and fixed income in Latin America's No. 2 economy, although that was not enough to avoid a wider current account deficit in the second quarter, the central bank reported on Monday. In currency markets, the Brazilian real fluctuated through the morning, though settled slightly weaker against the dollar in the afternoon. The Chilean and Mexican pesos were little-changed. The Colombian peso weakened for the ninth straight session, losing about 0.5 percent against the dollar on Monday. "The central bank continues to engage in verbal foreign exchange intervention with several board members citing concerns of the impact of (currency) strength on growth and exports," wrote Siobhan Morden, head of Latin America strategy at Jefferies in a client note Monday. "We attribute this foreign exchange weakness to less supportive policy risk and technicals that leaves (the peso) vulnerable to the heavy interventionist policy." Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1659 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 1083.7 0.06 8.02 MSCI LatAm 3536.64 0.79 9.63 Brazil Bovespa 59222.94 1.4 14.98 Mexico IPC 45499.09 0.27 6.49 Chile IPSA 3947.65 -0.06 6.72 Chile IGPA 19224.44 -0.05 5.47 Argentina MerVal 9376.529 2.23 73.93 Colombia IGBC 14367.43 -0.06 9.92 Peru IGRA 17012.9 -0.14 7.99 Venezuela IBC 2573.05 0.55 -5.98 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 2.2860 -0.29 3.10 Mexico peso 13.1385 0.00 -0.83 Chile peso 582.8 0.03 -9.73 Colombia peso 1934.6 -0.53 -0.13 Peru sol 2.83 0.04 -1.31 Argentina peso (interbank) 8.4150 -0.12 -22.85 Argentina peso (parallel) 13.9 0.22 -28.06 (Reporting by Asher Levine; editing by Andrew Hay)
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