November 20, 2018 / 9:53 PM / 20 days ago

EMERGING MARKETS-LatAm stocks, currencies down as tepid investor appetite weighs

 (Recasts; updates prices, adds quote)
    Nov 20 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies and stocks
extended losses on Tuesday, swept up in a global sell-off fueled
by concerns of slowing global growth and investors pivoting
toward safer assets in the developed world.   
    MSCI's indexes of Latin America stocks and
regional currencies fell for a second straight
day, with declines of 1 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively. 
    Gabriel Casillas, chief economist and head of research at
Banorte, wrote that among the main drivers for equity markets
was worry over U.S.-China trade tensions, coupled with growing
recommendations from Wall Street to add safer assets to investor
portfolios. 
    All equity markets in Latin America ended the day lower.
    Mexican stocks, which did not trade on Monday, slid
1.3 percent, with all but six names of the 35 on the index in
negative territory. The peso weakened marginally, a day
after recording a 1.1 percent slide. 
    Investors are on the watch for a public consultation the
incoming administration has scheduled for the weekend, about a
month after the scrapping of an already-started airport project 
pummeled the peso to multi-month lows.
    There are 10 policy proposals to be voted on, including a
new rail line and the building of a $2.5 billion refinery, which
President-elect Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's incoming
government feels will boost gasoline production and help cut
growing fuel imports.    
    Financial markets in Brazil, Latin America's largest
economy, were closed for a local holiday.
    Argentina's peso weakened about 0.7 percent while the
country's Merval stock index sank 4.5 percent to put a
decisive end to a three-session winning run. 
    The index's slide was its biggest one-day fall in nearly
three months. The market was closed on Monday.
    Chile's peso weakened 0.3 percent, down for the first
session in five, while benchmark stocks fell 1.2
percent.
    A 3.9 percent slide in lithium producer SQM's securities
 weighed heavily on the main index.
    In Colombia, stocks dropped 1.7 percent, adding to
Monday's 1 percent fall. The peso weakened about 0.7
percent, also down for a second straight session.
    
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2127 GMT
    
 Stock indexes                           daily %     YTD %
                             Latest       change    change
 MSCI Emerging Markets          972.58     -1.59    -16.04
                                                  
 MSCI LatAm                    2625.31     -0.95     -7.17
                                                  
 Mexico IPC                   41757.18     -1.33    -15.39
                                                  
 Chile IPSA                    5100.35     -1.24     -1.24
                                                  
 Argentina MerVal             29714.68     -4.48     -1.17
                                                  
 Colombia IGBC                12022.19     -1.73      5.73
                                                  
                                                          
 Currencies                              daily %     YTD %
                                          change    change
                                Latest            
 Mexico peso                   20.3813     -0.05     -3.35
                                                  
 Chile peso                      671.3     -0.46     -8.44
                                                  
 Colombia peso                 3193.99     -0.64     -6.64
 Peru sol                        3.384     -0.24     -4.34
                                                  
 Argentina peso                36.1800     -0.64    -48.59
 (interbank)                                      
                                                  
 

 (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru)
  
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