EMERGING MARKETS-Mexican stocks at record high, Brazil steady

Mon Dec 17, 2012 5:56pm EST

Related Topics

* Progress in U.S. budget talks eases concerns
    * Bovespa little changed, Mexico's IPC up 0.67 pct


    By Michael O'Boyle
    SAO PAULO, Dec 17 (Reuters) - Mexican stocks closed at a
record high on Monday, boosted by optimism that U.S. lawmakers
will avert a stand-off over the country's budget that could
throw the world's No. 1 economy into recession. 
    Mexico's IPC index added 0.67 percent to 43,338.33,
its highest close ever. 
    Stocks were lifted by signs of flexibility in budget talks
between Republican Party leaders and President Barack Obama on
Sunday. Both sides need to reach an agreement to avert automatic
tax hikes and spending cuts that would kick in next year.
 
    Mexico sends nearly 80 percent of its exports to its
northern neighbor and economists have warned that the U.S.
economy could be dragged into recession if lawmakers do not
stave off the so-called "fiscal cliff".
    Top U.S. cement supplier Cemex rose more than
4.69 percent while retailer Wal-Mart de Mexico 
added 2.25 percent.
    Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index traded little
changed, edging down 0.06 percent to 59,566.52. The index hit
resistance just below 60,000 last week, its highest level since
October.
    "The discussions in the U.S. are advancing, but it's
something I don't see getting solved as quickly as the market
would like, and that is leaving investors cautious," said Newton
Rosa, chief economist with asset management firm SulAmerica in
Sao Paulo.
    Preferred shares of state-controlled oil company Petroleo
Brasileiro SA, known as Petrobras, fell 1.43 percent
as profit-takers took advantage of the stock's 3 percent gain in
the previous session, its biggest daily rise in three months.
    Both the Bovespa and the IPC are up more than 3 percent this
month. 
    "A calming in Europe's debt crisis and the retaking of
growth in the United States reinforces the trend for a gain in
the Bovespa in December," said Bruno Piagentini, an analyst with
brokerage Coinvalores in Sao Paulo. 
    A technical indicator of Mexico's IPC known as the relative
strength index hit "overbought" territory however, indicating
stocks may be due to fall in coming sessions.
    Chile's IPSA index rose 0.4 percent as industrial
conglomerate Copec SA rose 0.97 percent.
    
    Latin America's key stock indexes at 2200 GMT:
 Stock indexes                    daily %  year-to
                         Latest    change   date %
                                            change
 MSCI LatAm             3,736.74    -0.06     3.73
                                           
 Brazil Bovespa        59,566.52    -0.06     4.96
                                           
 Mexico IPC            43,338.33     0.67    16.89
                                           
 Chile IPSA             4,279.93      0.4     2.45
                                           
 Chile IGPA            20,927.10     0.35     3.96
                                           
 Argentina MerVal       2,759.19      2.3    12.04
                                           
 Colombia IGBC         14,592.01     0.39    15.21
                                           
 Peru IGRA             20,163.94     0.08     3.55
                                           
 Venezuela IBC        476,415.25     0.46   307.07
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