EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies slip on Greece worry; Petrobras gains
SAO PAULO, June 26 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies traded mostly weaker on Friday as mounting investor jitters over a potential Greek debt default sparked demand for the safe-haven U.S. dollar. Brazil's real managed to remain little changed on expectations for higher interest rates, however, while equities were broadly higher. Greece remained at odds with its creditors on Friday as negotiations to stave off a default on an International Monetary Fund loan approached a Tuesday deadline. Investors were concerned over the potential impact of a Greek default across the euro zone, sapping demand for riskier assets. Colombia's peso had its biggest decline in three weeks, hurt also by a drop in the price for oil, the country's main export. The Mexican and Chilean pesos both fell about 0.5 percent. Brazil's real stayed fairly stable after the country's national monetary council narrowed its inflation target band for 2017 to persuade investors it is getting tougher on persistently high inflation. The outlook for higher interest rates and the resulting inflow of foreign funds helped support the real. In equities markets, Brazil's Bovespa index climbed about 1 percent, driven by a gain in shares of oil producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA, known as Petrobras. Part of the Petrobras gain came from bargain-hunting, traders said, after the stock dropped 4.5 percent on Thursday on concern over developments in an ongoing corruption probe at the state-run company. Investors were also encouraged by comments from a leading Brazilian congressman on Friday that a requirement in the national oil law that Petrobras participate in all subsalt exploration and production blocks would be changed. Shares of private education firms Kroton Educacional SA and Estacio Participacoes SA both sank about 5 percent after Brazil said it would offer fewer student loans this year. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1508 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 979.17 -0.91 3.33 MSCI LatAm 2539.61 0.38 -7.25 Brazil Bovespa 53803.77 1.18 7.59 Mexico IPC 45581.62 0.45 5.65 Chile IPSA 3878.83 0.48 0.72 Chile IGPA 18917.08 0.43 0.25 Argentina MerVal 11570.319 1.02 34.87 Colombia IGBC 10215.1 0.11 -12.20 Peru IGRA - - - Venezuela IBC 13204.47 0 242.20 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.1287 -0.06 -15.06 Mexico peso 15.5696 -0.56 -5.30 Chile peso 635.6 -0.68 -4.59 Colombia peso 2592.57 -1.28 -7.89 Peru sol 3.1711 -0.06 -6.06 Argentina peso 9.0725 0.00 -5.76 (interbank) Argentina peso 13.31 1.58 5.18 (parallel) (Reporting by Asher Levine; Editing by Peter Galloway)
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