EMERGING MARKETS-Latam markets rally after Fed

miércoles 18 de marzo de 2015 14:56 GYT

SAO PAULO, March 18 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies
reversed early losses on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve
signaled it could wait longer than some investors were expecting
to raise U.S. interest rates.
    Equities also rallied, with the broader MSCI Latin American
stock index extending early gains. 
    The Fed on Wednesday removed the word 'patient' from its
policy-setting statement as expected, though investors shifted
their bets from a June hike to a September one after the central
bank downgraded its expected pace of growth and inflation.
    "It looks like they are going to hold on for a bit," said
Paulo Celso Nepomuceno, a trader with Coinvalores in Sao Paulo.
    Brazil's real , which had traded as low as 3.279
to the dollar, reversed its losses after the Fed's statement to
trade around 3.22. The real saw additional downward pressure on
Wednesday after a government source told Reuters that the
Brazilian central bank had little room to continue implementing
its currency swap program. 
    The swap program, which helps support the currency, is
scheduled to end on March 31, though it could be extended. The
program's next steps will be decided in coming weeks, central
bank president Alexandre Tombini said on Wednesday, noting the
program has a "significant size."  
    Other currencies in the region jumped as well, with
Colombia's peso, also supported by a rise in oil prices,
notching its biggest one-day gain in over a month.
    Latin American stock markets surged, with Brazil's Bovespa
index touching its highest since March 2.
    Gains were led by shares of the most widely traded companies
such as lender Itau Unibanco Holding SA and state-run
oil producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA, known as
Petrobras. Both stocks tend to attract a large share of foreign
investors and often rise on the outlook for greater global
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1843 GMT:
 Stock indexes                           daily %     YTD %
                             Latest       change    change
 MSCI Emerging Markets          962.04      1.37     -0.76
 MSCI LatAm                    2438.08      2.62     -12.9
 Brazil Bovespa               51482.45      2.38      2.95
 Mexico IPC                   43923.07      0.37      1.80
 Chile IPSA                    3861.61      0.31      0.28
 Chile IGPA                   18839.78      0.24     -0.16
 Argentina MerVal            11115.699      1.16     29.57
 Colombia IGBC                 9934.05         1    -14.62
 Peru IGRA                    12595.71      0.53    -14.86
 Venezuela IBC                 4704.73      0.78     21.92
 Currencies                              daily %     YTD %
                                          change    change
 Brazil real                    3.2246      0.14    -17.59
 Mexico peso                   15.2263      1.01     -3.17
 Chile peso                      642.5     -0.12     -5.62
 Colombia peso                    2626      1.26     -9.06
 Peru sol                        3.091      0.23     -3.62
 Argentina peso                 8.7900     -0.03     -2.73
 Argentina peso                  12.91     -0.23      8.44
 (Reporting by Asher Levine and Bruno Federowski; Editing by
James Dalgleish)