EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks choppy; Bovespa reverses losses

Mon Sep 24, 2012 1:07pm EDT

Related Topics

* Bargain-hunters pick up Brazil homebuilders, oil firms
    * Investors step up bets on China stimulus
    * Brazil Bovespa gains 0.53 pct, Mexico IPC up 0.2 pct

    By Asher Levine and Danielle Assalve
    SAO PAULO, Sept 24 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks were
choppy on Monday as investors took advantage of recent losses to
pick up shares in Brazilian homebuilders and oil producers.
    The MSCI Latin American stock index was
nearly flat at 3,741.50 points while Mexico's IPC index 
edged higher.
    Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index reversed
early losses to post its biggest gain in more than a week,
rising 0.53 percent to 61,644.41 after hitting resistance at
61,800 points.
    The Bovespa opened lower after data showed German business
sentiment dropped in September to its lowest level since early
2010, dampening optimism over an economic recovery in the euro
zone and sapping demand for riskier assets.
    Analysts said the early sell-off helped attract bargain
hunters who are placing bets on further government economic
stimulus in China, Brazil's biggest trading partner and a key
purchaser of Latin American commodities such as iron ore,
soybeans, petroleum and copper.
    "Brazil's market is impacted from abroad in two ways: one is
the European crisis and U.S. growth, where Brazil stocks follow
based on risk appetite, and the other is China, where Brazil is
more directly impacted due to commodities demand," said Dany
Rappaport, a partner with Investport in Sao Paulo.
    China's leadership transition, widely expected to get under
way mid-October with the announcement of the date of the 18th
Party Congress, might pave the way for more conclusive steps
from Beijing to support the economy and the market, according to
Citigroup analysts. 
    "I think the expectation is that measures will be taken soon
in China, which will help Brazil," Rappaport said, adding that
he sees the Bovespa closing the year at 64,000 points. 
    Shares of homebuilder PDG Realty gained 2
percent, contributing most to the index's rise, while rival
Gafisa added 2.9 percent. 
    "Homebuilders are going through a technical correction as
they have fallen more than the average in recent months," said
Leandro Silvestrini, an investment advisor with Intrader in Sao
Paulo.
    Oil companies also gained, with OGX, which is
controlled by Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista, up 1.1
percent, and state-controlled rival Petrobras rising
0.2 percent.
    Mexico's IPC index rose for the first session in
three, adding 0.2 percent to 40,418.63.
    Shares of telecommunications firm America Movil,
controlled by billionaire Carlos Slim, rose 0.43 percent,
contributing the most to the index's rise, while mining firm
Grupo Mexico added 1 percent.
    Chile's IPSA index dropped 0.4 percent to 4,214.35
as shares of Banco Santander Chile fell 1.13 percent. 

    Latin America's key stock indexes at 16:00 GMT:
 Stock indexes                           daily %      YTD %
                          Latest          change     change
 MSCI LatAm                  3,741.50      -0.07       3.94
                                                  
 Brazil Bovespa             61,644.41       0.53       8.62
                                                  
 Mexico IPC                 40,418.63        0.2       9.01
                                                  
 Chile IPSA                  4,214.35       -0.4       0.88
                                                  
 Chile IGPA                 20,492.68      -0.32       1.80
                                                  
 Argentina MerVal            2,531.75       1.23       2.81
                                                  
 Colombia IGBC              14,165.91      -1.08      11.84
                                                  
 Peru IGRA                  21,788.58      -0.44      11.89
                                                  
 Venezuela IBC             321,667.25       5.29     174.84
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