CORRECTED-EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil's real hovers near all-time low
(Corrects introduction of real to 1994 from 1993) SAO PAULO, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Brazil's currency approached its weakest level ever on Monday as an increasingly complicated economic and political outlook continued to rattle investors. Other Latin American currencies posted modest losses, while the region's stock markets were little changed. The Brazilian real sank as low as 3.985 per U.S. dollar in early trading, its weakest intraday level since October 2002. The real's all-time record intraday low is 4.014 per dollar, touched earlier that month. Four per dollar is a major psychological threshold for Brazil's currency. Since its introduction in 1994, the real has never closed at or beyond that level. Part of the currency's decline on Monday was driven by a worsening outlook for Brazil's recession-battered economy. A weekly central bank poll released before the market open showed economists expect a deeper recession than originally forecast, coupled with higher inflation. Brazil lost its investment-grade credit rating from Standard & Poor's this month and investors are watching for signs that political gridlock will ease enough to allow critical spending cuts and tax increases to pass. The central bank, which has been attempting to support the real through market intervention, said it would sell as much as $3 billion on the currency spot market with repurchase agreements at two auctions on Monday. "The central bank intervention helps, but it doesn't make miracles happen," said Reginaldo Siaca, head of currency trading at brokerage TOV in Sao Paulo, who expects the real to surpass four per dollar "in the very short term." Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1446 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 815.73 -1.7 -13.22 MSCI LatAm 1985.39 -1.26 -26.28 Brazil Bovespa 47358.09 0.2 -5.30 Mexico IPC 43634.24 0.16 1.13 Chile IPSA 3811.27 0.38 -1.03 Chile IGPA 18610.03 0.39 -1.38 Argentina MerVal 10558.109 0.02 23.07 Colombia IGBC 9569.98 -0.18 -17.75 Venezuela IBC 13263.35 0 243.72 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.9822 -0.62 -33.27 Mexico peso 16.6682 -0.05 -11.54 Chile peso 682.4 -0.53 -11.14 Colombia peso 2991 -0.23 -20.16 Peru sol 3.1901 0.00 -6.62 Argentina peso 9.3825 -0.03 -8.87 (interbank) Argentina peso 15.81 0.63 -11.45 (parallel) (Reporting by Asher Levine and Bruno Federowski; Editing by James Dalgleish)
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