February 27, 2019 / 3:12 PM / 8 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks dip as India-Pakistan jitters weigh

    By Aaron Saldanha
    Feb 27 (Reuters) - Stocks in Latin America fell on
Wednesday, following global peers lower after an escalation in
tensions between India and Pakistan hit risk appetite, while
most currencies in the region softened as cautious risk
sentiment prevailed. 
    Nuclear powers India and Pakistan claimed that they shot
down each other's fighter jets, with Pakistan capturing an
Indian pilot a day after Indian warplanes struck inside Pakistan
for the first time since a 1971 war. The news
rattled global markets, with investors seeking safe havens such
as the Swiss franc and Japan's yen.
    Mexico's peso, one of the developing world's most
traded currencies, softened 0.2 percent. 
    Gabriela Siller, director of economic and financial analysis
at Banco BASE in Mexico, said firmer oil prices
supported the peso and real, while the India-Pakistan dispute
heightened risk aversion.
    Mexican state-owned oil company Pemex is due to report
fourth-quarter results later in the session. Last month, the
company's credit was double-downgraded by Fitch to the last rung
of investment grade, sparking fears the country's rating would
soon be on the chopping block.
    Sao Paulo-traded stocks dropped half a percent,
pressured by losses in all sectors apart from energy.    
    State-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA saw its common
shares and preferred shares rise at least
0.4 percent each.
    Brazil's real was 0.3 percent higher, a day after
Roberto Campos Neto was confirmed as the new president of the
central bank.
    "We would note that new central bank governors tend to be
more orthodox at the start of their tenures and may come off as
hawkish to the market," wrote Citi Research Head of Emerging
Market strategy Dirk Willer and Emerging Markets FX Strategist
Kenneth Lam wrote in a note.     
    Stocks in Chile slipped 0.4 percent, while the 
country's peso fell 0.3 percent.
    Argentine stocks slid 0.2 percent, while Colombian
shares tacked on 0.3 percent, helped by oil firm
Ecopetrol SA.
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1453 GMT
 Stock indexes                                       daily %
                                         Latest       change
 MSCI Emerging Markets                     1060.70      -0.4
 MSCI LatAm                                2871.41     -0.39
 Brazil Bovespa                           97130.64     -0.48
 Mexico IPC                               43468.23     -0.36
 Chile IPSA                                5452.65     -0.42
 Argentina MerVal                         35960.11     -0.18
 Colombia IGBC                            12365.55      0.33
 Currencies                                          daily %
 Brazil real                                3.7447     -0.02
 Mexico peso                               19.2109     -0.23
 Chile peso                                 649.85     -0.32
 Colombia peso                             3073.26      0.20
 Peru sol                                    3.303      0.00
 Argentina peso (interbank)                38.7300      0.41
 (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru; Editing by David
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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