EMERGING MARKETS-Latin American stocks rise on hope for US debt deal

Thu Nov 29, 2012 6:26pm EST

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* Investors optimistic over U.S. fiscal deal
    * Brazil Bovespa rises 2.32 pct, Mexico IPC up 0.42 pct

    By Asher Levine and Danielle Assalve
    SAO PAULO/MEXICO CITY, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Latin American
stocks gained on Thursday as optimism U.S. political leaders may
avert a fiscal crisis fed demand for riskier assets, driving
Brazilian stocks to their highest one-day gain since
mid-September.
    Brazilian shares rose despite U.S. House of Representatives
Speaker John Boehner saying on Thursday that no substantive
advances had been made in tackling the so-called "fiscal
cliff". 
     "The focus has moved to the United States, pulling
attention away from Europe and the problems there," said Bruno
Piagentini, an analyst at the Coinvalores brokerage in Sao
Paulo. "But we believe they'll be able to avoid the fiscal
cliff, which in some ways represents a very big risk to the
Republicans."
    Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index added 2.32
percent to 57,852.53, rising for a second consecutive session,
helping to scale back recent losses that had pushed the index to
levels not seen since late July.
    A failure to avoid tax hikes and spending cuts associated
with the fiscal cliff could send the U.S. economy into recession
and drive investors away from higher-risk assets. 
    Shares in LX, Brazilian billionaire Eike
Batista's logistics company, helped drive the index upwards,
gaining nearly 30 percent after it announced on Wednesday that
it had signed a 30-year renewable contract with GE to
install an industrial unit at the Acu port in Rio de Janeiro.
    "There are at least 30 years of guaranteed revenue for LLX,
thanks to a contract with one of the largest companies in the
world, and it pleased the market," said Ariovaldo Santos, a
stock trading manager at brokerage H.Commcor in Sao Paulo.
    Widely traded stocks, whose performance tend to track global
risk appetite, gained, with preferred shares of state-controlled
oil producer Petrobras up 2.68 percent, while
iron-ore mining giant Vale saw its shares rise 3.92
percent. 
    Steel-maker CSN rose 9.61 percent after Santander
analysts shifted the rating on the company to "buy."
    "The CSN model offers some advantages, in terms of
diversification and its mining operations, which are among the
best for steelmakers," said Piagentini. 
    Brazil's largest maker of flat steel products, Usinas
Sider├║rgicas de Minas Gerais SA, rose 7.42 percent. 
    Electric utilities fell, with Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras
SA, known as Eletrobras, down 7.46 percent after a
four-day rally. Investors are still looking for a stable price
for the stock after concerns over the impact of a government
concession-renewal plan sent shares tumbling this quarter.
    The MSCI Latin American stock index added
1.11 percent to 3,594.39, its biggest gain in more than a week. 
The index rose nearly 3 percent last week after five consecutive
sessions of gains.
    Chile's IPSA index notched its biggest gain since
mid-October, rising 0.6 percent to 4,137.55, as shares of
industrial conglomerate Empresas Copec added 1.94
percent. 
    Mexico's IPC index rose for the second straight
session, with shares of telecommunications firm America Movil
, controlled by billionaire Carlos Slim, up 0.65
percent. 
    Latin America's key stock indexes at 2236 GMT:
    
 Stock indexes                                     % change
                                Latest        
                                                           
 MSCI LatAm                      3,594.39              1.11
                                              
 Brazil Bovespa                 57,852.53              2.32
                                              
 Mexico IPC                     42,090.69              0.42
                                              
 Chile IPSA                      4,137.55               0.6
                                              
 Chile IGPA                     20,325.45              0.45
                                              
 Argentina MerVal                2,408.17              3.46
                                              
 Colombia IGBC                  14,144.00              0.78
                                              
 Peru IGRA                      20,165.15              0.46
                                              
 Venezuela IBC                 408,271.50              1.06
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