EMERGING MARKETS-Latam FX drops on Fed anxiety; real up on finance chief talk

miércoles 19 de noviembre de 2014 14:25 GYT

SAO PAULO, Nov 19 (Reuters) - Most Latin American currencies
weakened on Wednesday on caution before the release of minutes
from the latest U.S. Federal Reserve meeting, but the Brazilian
real was supported by speculation that President Dilma Rousseff
might appoint a market-friendly name to head the country's
finance ministry.
    The currencies of Mexico, Chile, and Colombia
 slid between 0.3 percent and 0.5 percent as investors
braced for the possibility that the Fed minutes will affirm the
more hawkish policy statements released by the bank a few weeks
    Latin American assets could come under renewed selling
pressure if U.S. policymakers signal they're ready to raise
interest rates earlier than expected, reducing investors'
appetite for risk.
    In Brazil, however, expectation about the makeup of
Rousseff's new economic team has been increasingly driving
    Investors were particularly anxious to know who will replace
Finance Minister Guido Mantega because that choice will signal
whether the re-elected president is willing to alter economic
    The Brazilian real gained 0.2 percent while the
benchmark Bovespa stock index rose 0.9 percent as
investors were encouraged by media reports that Rousseff was
considering adding market-friendly names to her economic team.
    The president is "close" to naming a new finance minister, a
government official told Reuters on condition of anonymity. Some
investors have speculated the announcement could come as early
as Wednesday since Thursday is a market holiday in most of
Brazil, which would give markets time to digest the pick.
    Shares of Brazil's state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro
SA, or Petrobras, gained 1.6 percent but were still
down more than 40 percent since mid October. The stock initially
dropped on investor disappointment over Rousseff's re-election
and, more recently, over a growing corruption scandal that could
force the oil company to write down billions of dollars.

    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1810 GMT:
 Stock indexes                   daily %    YTD %
                                  change   change
 MSCI Emerging           987.48    -0.12     -1.4
 MSCI LatAm             2965.62     1.01    -8.27
 Brazil Bovespa        52536.12     0.91     2.00
 Mexico IPC            44067.91     1.33     3.14
 Chile IPSA             3968.23     0.88     7.27
 Chile IGPA            19311.46     0.75     5.95
 Argentina MerVal       9732.88    -0.63    80.54
 Colombia IGBC         12802.42    -0.33    -2.06
 Peru IGRA             15089.29    -0.58    -4.22
 Venezuela IBC          2844.47    -0.75     3.94
 Currencies                      daily %    YTD %
                                  change   change
 Brazil real             2.5832     0.23    -8.76
 Mexico peso            13.6112    -0.39    -4.27
 Chile peso               600.8    -0.45   -12.43
 Colombia peso           2159.8    -0.46   -10.55
 Peru sol                 2.927     0.00    -4.58
 Argentina peso          8.5125     0.03   -23.73
 Argentina peso            13.5     0.37   -25.93
 (Reporting by Paula Laier and Bruno Federowski, writing by
Walter Brandimarte; Editing by Peter Galloway)