EMERGING MARKETS-Mexico peso hits 2-year low, Brazil real slumps
(Recasts throughout, adds closing prices) SAO PAULO, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Mexico's peso sank to a more than two-year low on Wednesday on signs of slowing global economic growth, while Brazil's real tumbled on concern a leading presidential candidate could end a currency intervention program. The Brazilian real weakened by its most in more than a year, sliding past 2.45 per dollar for the first time in over a week. A top economic adviser for presidential candidate Aecio Neves said that, if elected, Neves would end daily sales of currency swaps that have been supporting the real against the dollar. Swaps are derivatives that provide investors with protection against currency losses. The central bank has been regularly selling those contracts for more than a year and the existing stock of swaps amounts to nearly $100 billion. Also on Wednesday, data showed U.S. retail sales declined in September, casting doubt on the strength of a recovery in the world's largest economy while investors also see slowing growth in China and Europe. "There is a little bit of panic, of worry about global economic data," said Cristian Lancheros, a currency analyst at brokerage Acciones y Valores in Colombia. Colombia's peso slumped 1 percent against the dollar to its weakest in five years while the MSCI Latin American stock index fell nearly 4 percent in its biggest one-day percentage drop since June 2013. Mexico's peso lost 0.7 percent to 13.5380 per dollar, stabilizing a bit after plunging just past 13.62 to its weakest level since July 2012. "There is some worry about contagion ... from Europe's market to the United States, and obviously it's the same for Mexico," said Rafael Camarena an economist at Santander. Mexico's economy is deeply linked to its northern neighbor, the destination of nearly 80 percent of local exports. Global markets churned as investors worried about a glut of oil supply that has slammed crude prices and the Ebola outbreak. Brazil's Bovespa stock index sank more than 3 percent, leading losses in Latin American stocks. Traders said part of the day's decline was due to expiration of index futures contracts and profit-taking following a nearly 5 percent rally in the Bovespa on bets that market-friendly candidate Neves could win the presidency. Mexico's IPC stock index, which tends to track the economic outlook of the United States slipped to a more than three month low. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2100 GMT: Stock Latest daily % YTD % change indexes change MSCI LatAm 3,156.67 -3.75 2.46 Brazil Bovespa 56,135.27 -3.24 8.99 Mexico IPC 42,984.95 -0.45 0.60 Chile IPSA 3,791.28 -1.43 2.49 Chile IGPA 18,655.01 -1.21 2.35 Argentina MerVal 9,653.11 -2.43 79.06 Colombia IGBC 12,821.09 -0.45 -1.91 Peru IGRA 15,819.13 1.3 0.42 Venezuela IBC 2,890.93 0 5.64 Currencies Latest daily % YTD % change change Brazil real 2.4570 -2.36 -4.08 Mexico peso 13.5300 -0.61 -3.70 Chile peso 587.5000 0.03 -10.45 Colombia peso 2068.3500 -0.94 -6.59 Peru sol 2.9070 -0.14 -3.92 Argentina peso (interbank) 8.4725 0.00 -23.37 Argentina peso (parallel) 14.6800 0.61 -31.88 (Reporting by Michael O'Boyle, Alexandra Alper and Nelson Bocanegra; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)
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