UPDATE 1-Itaú BBA expects Latin America fee pool to recover
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By Guillermo Parra-Bernal and Tatiana Bautzer
SAO PAULO Aug 22 (Reuters) - Fees for advising on investment banking activities in Latin America are expected to grow this year, reflecting increased confidence on a recovery in Brazil and healthy deal flow in Argentina and Mexico, bankers at Itaú BBA SA said on Monday.
The so-called fee pool, comprised of the revenue that companies pay banks for merger advisory and bond and stock underwriting, rose 3 percent to $730 million in the first seven months, Itaú BBA bankers said at an event.
While fees from Brazil fell in the period from a year earlier, the room for an increase is significant as more companies seek to raise capital in the stock market or dispose of assets, said Christian Egan, deputy head of corporate and investment banking at Itaú BBA, Brazil's largest investment bank.
The share of fees earned in Latin America outside Brazil rose in the period, and will continue to do so, albeit at a slower pace than Brazil's, Egan said. He said Itaú BBA expects healthy deal flow specifically from Argentina and Mexico.
"As the economy in Brazil begins to show signs of recovery, a number of companies have begun to express interest in either accessing markets or finding a partner," Egan said at an annual lunch for reporters.
Itaú BBA is the corporate and investment banking arm of Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Latin America's largest bank by market value. (Additional reporting by Marcelo Teixeira; editing by Grant McCool)
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