EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil stocks up as Parente named Petrobras CEO
By Bruno Federowski and Priscila Jordão SAO PAULO, May 20 (Reuters) - Brazilian equities rose on Friday after the nomination of a well-known executive as head of Petrobras allayed fears of political meddling at the embattled state-controlled oil company. Brazil's interim president, Michel Temer, announced on Thursday he will name Pedro Parente as chief executive officer of Petróleo Brasileiro SA, as the company is formally known. He will be charged with helping the company out of its current financial crisis, a result of low world oil prices, crippling debt and a massive corruption scandal. "Parente has quality and experience both at the public sector and the private sector. He is a good pick, but he will face a steep challenge," Guide analysts wrote in a client note. Petrobras shares rose 2.7 percent, adding the most points to the country's benchmark Bovespa stock index. Shares of Oi SA, which are not part of the benchmark index, advanced 1.3 percent. Regulators forgave fines owed by the telecommunications company as long as it agreed to invest 3.2 billion reais ($900 million) in improving infrastructure. A recovery in global investor risk appetite also raised demand for Latin American assets, with the Chilean peso following copper prices higher. Still, most of the region's currencies looked set to end the week lower as expectations grew of a U.S. interest rate increase as soon as June. This could reduce the allure of high-yielding assets, draining capital away from Latin American markets. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1505 GMT: Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 786.46 0.59 -1.55 MSCI LatAm 2096.27 1.75 12.6 Brazil Bovespa 50369.10 0.47 16.19 Mexico IPC 45201.39 0.33 5.17 Chile IPSA 3957.06 0.47 7.52 Chile IGPA 19471.26 0.43 7.27 Argentina MerVal 12774.64 1.17 9.42 Colombia IGBC 9836.38 0.22 15.08 Venezuela IBC 15357.33 -0.04 5.27 Currencies daily % YTD % change change Latest Brazil real 3.5410 0.78 11.47 Mexico peso 18.3970 0.15 -6.34 Chile peso 691.9 0.55 2.57 Colombia peso 3046.5 0.32 4.03 Peru sol 3.3329 0.27 2.43 Argentina peso (interbank) 14.0950 0.04 -7.89 Argentina peso (parallel) 14.64 0.48 -2.53 (Writing by Bruno Federowski; Editing by Alistair Bell)
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