March 25, 2020 / 3:16 PM / 2 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks, FX buoyed by global stimulus

    By Susan Mathew
    March 25 (Reuters) - Mexico's peso firmed almost 2%,
steadily rising off all-time lows and most Latin American
currencies made small gains on Wednesday as global stimulus
measures buoyed sentiment.
    Central banks and governments around the world have taken
drastic measures to cushion the blow from the coronavirus
pandemic, most notably the U.S. Federal Reserve's limitless
quantitative easing and Washington's $2 trillion stimulus
package that awaits passage by Congress.
    "All this action is unprecedented for a condition that is as
well," said Juan Perez, senior foreign exchange trader and
strategist at Tempus Inc. 
    "The 2008 crisis and World Wars saw a lot of money move too,
but this is giving out while no one can act."
    All the stimulus announcements eased the rush to the dollar.

    Mexico's peso extended gains to a second day as data
on Wednesday showed Mexican retail sales rose 0.5 percent in
January from December.
    In Brazil, data showed services activity grew more than
expected year-on-year in January, while according to a mid-month
measure of consumer inflation virtually evaporated in March, as
air travel costs plunged.
    The real firmed 0.6%. 
    Separate data showed Brazil posted its widest current
account deficit in over four years in February.
    But presidents of both Mexico and Brazil have been
criticized for being lax about the outbreak, urging citizens to
go out to restaurants and to work, while an increasing number of
countries are going into lockdowns to contain the spread of the
    "Yes, you do want to minimize inactivity, but Latam giants
like Brazil and Mexico must join the chorus if those economies
are to be perceived as healthy later on," Tempus Inc's Perez
    "Your economy must look fully ready to go back into full
throttle. That will only happen when it is guaranteed that is
safe to work and socialize." 
    In line with a sustained recovery on Wall Street, most
regional stocks rose between 0.6% and 6.6%. Gains in Brazil's
Bovespa index were limited by decline in shares of oil
firm Petrobras as crude prices fell.
    Chile's IPSA index jumped almost 4% to climb
further away from lows since 2009.    
    In Argentina, the peso declined. Reuters exclusively
reported that soybean deliveries to crushing plants have been
severely cut in Argentina, the world's top supplier of soymeal
livestock feed, as the country reacts to the coronavirus
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1500 GMT:
  Stock indexes           Latest   Daily %
 MSCI Emerging Markets     832.84     3.89
 MSCI LatAm               1552.39     3.63
 Brazil Bovespa          71877.55     3.08
 Mexico IPC              34792.83     0.66
 Chile IPSA               3015.58     4.17
 Argentina MerVal        25468.26    6.605
 Colombia COLCAP           954.20     3.32
      Currencies          Latest   Daily %
 Brazil real               5.0715     0.16
 Mexico peso              24.3240     2.07
 Chile peso                 843.1     0.25
 Colombia peso            4092.69     0.42
 Peru sol                  3.5067     0.34
 Argentina peso           64.0450    -0.43
 (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru;
Editing by Alistair Bell)
Nuestros Estándares:Los principios Thomson Reuters
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