March 6, 2019 / 5:30 PM / 7 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks dip; FX down on lower oil prices

    March 6 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks dipped on
Wednesday, with losses in Argentina and Brazil offsetting gains
in Chile and Colombia, while regional currencies slid, tracking
lower oil prices.  
    MSCI's index for Latin American stocks was
down 1 percent. 
    Argentina's Merval index slid over 3 percent, with
markets resuming trading after the Carnival holidays, while the
peso fell to its lowest since October 2018 on private
purchases of U.S. dollars in the face of high inflation. 
    "Most of the downside on EM today is a broad-based one with
oil playing its part," said Christian Lawrence, senior market
strategist, Latam, Rabobank.  
    "For Argentina, it seems like a general negative sentiment
on the peso," he added.  
    Argentina is going through a crisis originated in 2018 due
to an abrupt depreciation of the peso, which resulted in a
prolonged recession and very high inflation.
    Sao Paulo's Bovespa, which resumed trading for a
shorter session after the Carnival holidays, slid 0.4 percent,
led by declines in consumer and financials.
    Mexico's IPC index was little changed as central bank
board member Jonathan Heath said the country was a "long way"
from losing its investment grade rating. 
    Investors had worried about a possible sovereign downgrade
for Latin America's second-largest economy after a series of
announcements by rating agencies.
    Heath said stronger measures were required to revive
debt-laden state oil firm Pemex, which is at the center of
Mexico's ratings risks and holds nearly $106 billion in debt,
the highest of any national oil company in Latin America.
    Stocks in Chile rose 0.4 percent, led by gains
in shares of steel producer CAP after Morgan Stanley
raised the stock's price target.  
    Most currencies slid in the region. Mexico's peso and
Brazil's real fell between 0.6 percent and 1 percent,
following oil prices lower, while Chile's peso dipped
even though prices of copper, the country's main export, rose on
the day. 
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1715 GMT
 Stock indexes                     daily %
 MSCI Emerging Markets    1055.87     0.07
 MSCI LatAm               2743.23       -1
 Brazil Bovespa          94272.34    -0.35
 Mexico IPC              42093.90    -0.08
 Chile IPSA               5257.15     0.52
 Argentina MerVal        32557.77    -3.77
 Colombia IGBC           12438.21     0.55
 Currencies                        daily %
 Brazil real               0.2615    -1.04
 Mexico peso              19.3640    -0.60
 Chile peso                 659.5    -0.31
 Colombia peso            3105.03    -0.26
 Peru sol                   3.307     0.06
 Argentina peso           40.5000    -1.53

 (Reporting by Agamoni Ghosh; Editing by David Gregorio and
Bernadette Baum)
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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