EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks, currencies up for 2nd day as Brexit woes fade
By Bruno Federowski and Priscila Jordão SAO PAULO, June 29 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks and currencies rose for a second day on Wednesday as prospects of central bank stimulus overshadowed concerns over Britain's decision to leave the European Union. Traders also hunted for bargains after the "Brexit" referendum last week sparked a two-day selloff in global markets, erasing about $3 trillion in value. Banking shares, which were among the most affected by Britain's decision, extended their rebound on Wednesday. Traders bet global central banks would be quick to offer fresh stimulus if market turmoil threatens the economic outlook. Lender Itaú Unibanco SA added the most points to Brazil's benchmark Bovespa index, though the index remained about 1 percent lower than pre-referendum levels. Reports of corporate deals in Brazil's education sector also helped boost equities. "The volume of mergers and acquisitions means we're feeling optimistic about a possible improvement in investor sentiment," Guide Investimentos analysts wrote in a report. College operator Estácio Participações SA rose 4.3 percent after smaller rival Ser Educacional sweetened a merger bid. Ser is competing for Estácio with Kroton Educacional SA and the Zaher family, currently Estácio's No. 2 shareholder. GAEC Educação SA also announced on Tuesday it will acquire rival Allis Educacional for 46 million reais ($14.2 million) lifting its stock by 6.4 percent. Shares of Anima Educação, as GAEC is commonly known, are not part of the country's benchmark index. In foreign exchange markets, the Brazilian real soared over 2 percent as the country's central bank refrained from intervening despite the currency's recent rally. Central bank efforts to cushion gains in the real had led some traders to bet it meant to shield Brazilian exports but the bank has stood pat since mid-May. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1520 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % change change Latest MSCI Emerging Markets 823.07 2.21 1.4 MSCI LatAm 2234.57 4.25 17.14 Brazil Bovespa 51058.01 2.1 17.78 Mexico IPC 45374.97 1.48 5.58 Chile IPSA 3967.76 0.81 7.81 Chile IGPA 19603.26 0.71 8.00 Argentina MerVal 14401.17 1.83 23.35 Colombia IGBC 9768.54 0.64 14.29 Venezuela IBC 12993.30 -0.56 -10.93 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.2345 2.16 22.03 Mexico peso 18.5400 1.60 -7.07 Chile peso 659.9 1.03 7.55 Colombia peso 2909.47 2.49 8.93 Peru sol 3.302 0.00 3.39 Argentina peso (interbank) 14.8600 0.47 -12.63 Argentina peso (parallel) 14.8 1.49 -3.58 (Reporting by Bruno Federowski and Priscila Jordão; Writing by Bruno Federowski; Editing by Chris Reese)
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