By Bruno Federowski
SAO PAULO, June 3 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks and currencies rose on Thursday after U.S. job creation slowed sharply, allaying fears of a Federal Reserve rate hike as soon as this month.
The U.S. economy created only 38,000 jobs in May, the fewest in more than five years, suggesting a deterioration in the labor market.
That could derail the Fed’s plans to resume tightening monetary policy soon, sustaining the appeal of high-yielding emerging market assets.
Comments by Fed officials including Chair Janet Yellen had led some traders to bet the U.S. central bank could take action at its June 14-15 policy meeting.
“Everything suggested the Fed could increase its benchmark rate very soon, but these figures clash with that trajectory,” said INVX Global Asset Management chief economist Eduardo Velho.
Yellen will have a last chance to communicate with markets before the meeting in a speech on economic outlook and monetary policy on Monday in Philadelphia.
The Fed could also delay the increase because of mounting concern over the economic impact of Britain’s upcoming vote on whether to leave the European Union.
The Colombian peso shot up 2.05 percent. The currency sharply outperformed its peers this week after the central bank suspended its intervention policy aimed at cushioning the peso’s decline.
The Brazilian real gained 1.74 percent and strengthened past 3.55 per U.S. dollar. The country’s benchmark Bovespa stock index rose 1.5 percent as shares of miner Vale SA followed iron ore prices higher, rising 7.68 percent.
Local media reported on Thursday Brazil’s interim President Michel Temer plans to replace the head of Vale because he is too allied with suspended President Dilma Rousseff. (Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Additional reporting by Paula Arend Laier; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli and Diane Craft)