August 3, 2016 / 10:22 PM / 2 years ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies slightly changed on oil, U.S. data

(Updates prices, adds gains for Mexican peso)
    By Bruno Federowski
    SAO PAULO, Aug 3 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies were
slightly changed on Wednesday as higher prices for crude offset
stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs data.
    U.S. private employers added 179,000 jobs in July, raising
expectations that Friday's widely watched employment report
would also show solid labor gains. 
    Growing bets that the U.S. Federal Reserve could refrain
from increasing interest rates this year have supported
high-yielding assets for weeks, but traders say a strong reading
for this week's jobs report could threaten those gains.
    Colombia's peso weakened as much as 0.9 percent but
pared gains to close down 0.29 percent after prices of crude, a
key export and source of revenue, rose to session highs. 
    Mexico's peso, meanwhile, closed up 0.27 percent to trade at
18.883 pesos per U.S. dollar, also helped by higher oil prices.
    Oil futures jumped about 2 percent after a
larger-than-expected gasoline drawdown outshone a surprise build
in crude stockpiles. 
    The Brazilian real was nearly flat after falling as
low as 3.29 per U.S. dollar before closing at 3.24 per
greenback, also weighed by concerns over interim President
Michel Temer's capacity to approve tough austerity measures in
    Late on Tuesday, Brazil's lower house of Congress chose to
delay a vote on the terms of renegotiation of states debt with
the federal government, igniting concern over Temer's clout
among lawmakers.
    Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index, however,
rose 1.63 percent, supported by a jump in shares of
state-controlled oil company Petróleo Brasileiro SA 
    A U.S. appeals court put a class action against Petrobras,
as the company is known, on hold on Tuesday, potentially
stalling a much-anticipated U.S. trial. 
    Also helping boost the stock were local reports that
Petrobras could get up to 2.5 billion reais ($765 million) from
the sale of its liquefied natural gas distributor Liquigás
Distribuidora SA. 
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2100 GMT:
 Stock indexes                                 daily %    YTD %
                                  Latest        change   change
 MSCI Emerging Markets               868.18      -0.98     9.32
 MSCI LatAm                         2361.01       0.56    29.03
 Brazil Bovespa                    57076.91       1.63    31.67
 Mexico IPC                        46844.53       0.61     9.00
 Chile IPSA                         4097.83       0.21    11.35
 Chile IGPA                        20273.10       0.21    11.69
 Argentina MerVal                  15429.76       2.44    32.16
 Colombia IGBC                      9598.64       0.16    12.30
 Venezuela IBC                     12373.88      -0.43   -15.18
 (Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Additional reporting by Paula
Arend Laier and David Alire Garcia; Editing by Chris Reese and
Sandra Maler)
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