EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil real at near 6-month lows, intervention eyed

lunes 15 de septiembre de 2014 12:00 GYT

SAO PAULO, Sept 15 (Reuters) - The Brazilian real dropped to
its lowest level in nearly six months on Monday, testing the
central bank's willingness to tolerate a weaker currency, while
the Colombian currency strengthened the most since late July.
    The real fell 0.6 percent to 2.3487 reais per dollar
on investor concern over gains by President Dilma Rousseff in a
voter poll before next month's election. Investors are hopeful
that a different administration would enact more market-friendly
    But traders were cautions about betting on a further decline
in the currency in the short term as they kept an eye on
potential central bank intervention to limit further weakness in
the real, which makes imports more expensive and contributes to
    "The currency returned to (weakened) levels where,
historically, the central bank has shown signs of discomfort, so
the market remains cautious," said Reginaldo Galhardo, head of
currency trading at Sao Paulo brokerage Treviso.     
    A government source told Reuters late Friday that the bank
will extend its currency intervention program into 2015 and may
increase the rollover pace of expiring currency swaps to curb
volatility in the real. 
    Colombia's peso strengthened for the first session in
six and its most since late July after minutes from the central
bank's most recent policy-setting meeting, released late on
Friday, showed some board members thought there was no need to
continue raising interest rates. Colombian policymakers last
raised the benchmark rate by 25 basis points to 5.5 percent.
    Analysts were divided over the outlook for interest rates in
Colombia. Some, such as BNP Paribas' Nader Nazmi, estimate the
bank will likely pause its hiking cycle for the year to monitor
its effects.
    Others such as Nomura analyst Mario Castro see the bank
implementing two more 25 basis point increases, citing Nomura's
expectations for an increase in core inflation in the fourth
    Chile's peso swung widely before settling slightly
weaker in the afternoon.
    Prices for copper, the country's main export,
slipped towards three-month lows on Monday after data showed
growth at China's factories stumbled to its weakest in nearly
six years in August.
    In equities markets, Brazil's Bovespa stock index 
recouped part of the previous session's losses. The gains were
driven by steelmakers and iron-ore miner Vale SA 
after spot iron ore posted its biggest one-day rise since March
on Monday.
    The broader MSCI Latin American stock index 
posted its first rise in eight sessions, with Mexico's IPC stock
index edging higher and Chile's IPSA stock index 
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1515 GMT:
 Stock indexes                   daily %    YTD %
                                  change   change
 MSCI Emerging          1054.33    -0.68     5.87
 MSCI LatAm             3406.53      0.1     6.33
 Brazil Bovespa         57267.5      0.6    11.18
 Mexico IPC            45904.07     0.23     7.44
 Chile IPSA             3987.13     -0.1     7.78
 Chile IGPA            19377.24    -0.08     6.31
 Argentina MerVal     11143.869     0.81   106.71
 Colombia IGBC         14242.34     -0.2     8.96
 Peru IGRA             16966.75     0.24     7.70
 Venezuela IBC          2739.32     1.25     0.10
 Currencies                      daily %    YTD %
                                  change   change
 Brazil real             2.3434    -0.36     0.57
 Mexico peso            13.2322     0.14    -1.53
 Chile peso               595.2    -0.54   -11.61
 Colombia peso             1985     0.55    -2.67
 Peru sol                  2.86     0.03    -2.34
 Argentina peso          8.4025     0.00   -22.73
 Argentina peso           14.35     0.35   -30.31

 (Reporting by Bruno Federowski and Asher Levine Editing by W