EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies mostly firm after Fed minutes

jueves 18 de agosto de 2016 12:26 GYT

SAO PAULO, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Most Latin American currencies
strengthened on Thursday as higher oil prices and division in
the Federal Reserve over whether to raise interest rates soon
offset bullish comments by a U.S. policymaker.
    The minutes of the U.S. central bank's last policy meeting
released on Wednesday showed that policymakers agree that more
economic data is needed before tightening monetary policy.
    Many traders had expected a more direct sign that the Fed
intended to increase rates later this year, which could lure
capital away from higher-yielding - but riskier - emerging
    New York Fed President William Dudley has repeatedly pointed
to strength in the U.S. labor market, going so far as to mention
a possible September hike.  
    A rise in prices of oil also supported demand for assets
from crude exporters, with the Colombian peso 
strengthening over 1 percent. 
    The Brazilian real, however, weakened 0.6 percent,
weighed down by the central bank's intervention policy.
    Comments by interim President Michel Temer demonstrating
concern over the real's recent strength fostered speculation
that the government could aim to shield exports from currency
    The country's benchmark Bovespa stock index fell 0.4
percent on profit-taking after it touched a near two-year high
the day before.

    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1615 GMT:
 Stock indexes                     Latest       Daily  YTD pct
                                                  pct   change
 MSCI Emerging Markets                915.48     0.64    14.55
 MSCI LatAm                         2,486.56     -0.3    36.31
 Brazil Bovespa                    59,117.08    -0.35    36.37
 Mexico IPC                        48,105.56    -0.32    11.93
 Chile IPSA                         4,127.85    -0.11    12.16
 Chile IGPA                        20,416.12    -0.11    12.48
 Argentina MerVal                  15,504.02     0.66    32.79
 Colombia IGBC                      9,921.55    -0.05    16.08
 Venezuela IBC                     12,185.14      0.6   -16.47
 Currencies                                     Daily  YTD pct
                                                  pct   change
                                      Latest   change  
 Brazil real                          3.2286    -0.56    22.25
 Mexico peso                         18.0710     0.33    -4.65
 Chile peso                              656     0.27     8.19
 Colombia peso                      2,876.97     1.13    10.16
 Peru sol                              3.305     0.15     3.30
 Argentina peso (interbank)          14.8900    -0.60   -12.81
 Argentina peso (parallel)              15.4     0.19    -7.34
 (Por Bruno Federowski, editing by G Crosse)