EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil's real rallies as future economic policy eyed
SAO PAULO, Nov 26 (Reuters) - Brazil's currency, the real, strengthened for the second straight day on Wednesday as investors grew more confident that President Dilma Rousseff would name banker Joaquim Levy, a market favorite, as finance minister. The real was trading nearly 1 percent higher at midday at 2.5516 to the dollar. Other Latin American currencies were mostly weaker against the dollar, while stock markets were little changed. Rousseff will likely name the market-friendly Levy as her new finance minister on Thursday as well as announce the rest of her second-term economic team, a government official told Reuters on Tuesday. Levy, a University of Chicago-trained economist and a fiscal hawk, is expected to take over the ministry on Dec. 1, the official told Reuters. "The market is enthusiastic," said Reginaldo Galhardo, head of currency trading at Treviso Brokerage in Sao Paulo. "Because confidence has improved, investors are unwinding a lot of (long dollar) positions they had put together in case of a possible disappointment." Other traders said they were looking toward the potential announcement of government spending reforms later this week. Rousseff, recently re-elected for a second term, has pledged to address excess government spending, a factor that has weighed negatively on the country's credit rating. Elsewhere in Latin America, the Chilean, Mexican and Colombian pesos all weakened between 0.3 percent and 0.5 percent, weighed down by strong consumer spending data in the United States. Positive U.S. economic data tends to increase expectations for an interest rate hike in the world's largest economy and drive investors away from riskier assets. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1445 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 1011.8 0.27 0.64 MSCI LatAm 3102.27 0.13 -3.2 Brazil Bovespa 55414.31 -0.26 7.59 Mexico IPC 44551.5 0.25 4.27 Chile IPSA 3984.33 0.21 7.71 Chile IGPA 19421.02 0.2 6.55 Argentina MerVal 10019.64 0.83 85.86 Colombia IGBC 12651.6 -0.21 -3.21 Peru IGRA 15356.3 -0.02 -2.52 Venezuela IBC 2969.12 0 8.50 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 2.5116 0.98 -6.16 Mexico peso 13.7447 -0.53 -5.20 Chile peso 600.5 -0.32 -12.39 Colombia peso 2167.5 -0.44 -10.87 Peru sol 2.914 -0.14 -4.15 Argentina peso 8.5200 0.03 -23.80 (interbank) Argentina peso 13.25 0.75 -24.53 (parallel) (Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Writing by Asher Levine Editing by W Simon)
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