EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil stocks mostly flat, Gafisa rises

Mon Jan 20, 2014 11:01am EST

* Brazil Bovespa down 0.11 pct, Mexico IPC up 0.18 pct

    SAO PAULO, Jan 20 (Reuters) - Brazilian stocks were little
changed on Monday, while shares of homebuilder Gafisa SA
 advanced after the company posted encouraging
operational results. 
    Mexico's IPC index rose slightly, while Chile's
bourse ended a three-day rally.    
    U.S. stock markets were closed on Monday for the Martin
Luther King Jr. holiday, which kept trading volumes light.
    Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index was nearly
unchanged from Friday's close, hovering near 49,160 points.
    Preferred shares of mining firm Vale SA slipped
0.4 percent, offsetting a 1.1 percent rise in exchange operator
BM&F Bovespa SA.
    Shares of homebuilder Gafisa advanced 2.87 percent, their
biggest rise in a week, after the company reported a
better-than-expected increase in fourth-quarter project launches
and sales late Friday.
    The Bovespa is down nearly 5 percent since the start of the
year, with investors selling off shares of consumer-facing
companies in expectation of higher benchmark interest rates and
sluggish economic growth.
    Still, some analysts see opportunities for the Bovespa to
find support from advances in markets abroad.
    "For 2014, Brazil will tend to benefit from growth in its
two biggest trade partners, China and the U.S., as well as
Europe's recovery from its 'rock bottom,'" wrote BB
Investimentos analysts, led by Nataniel Cezimbra in a note to
investors on Monday. 
    The analysts were positive on nearly every sector of
Brazil's stock market, but remained "neutral" on homebuilders
and oil and gas companies. 
    Mexico's IPC index rose for the first session in
three, adding 0.18 percent.
    Shares of lender Grupo Financiero Banorte rose
0.9 percent, while bottling firm Femsa lost 0.54
percent.
    Chile's IPSA index fell its most in over a week as
shares of energy group Endesa lost 1.1 percent, while
retailer Falabella dropped 0.5 percent. 
    
    Latin America's key stock indexes at 1523 GMT:
 Stock indexes         Latest         daily %    YTD %
                                      change     change
 MSCI LatAm            3,072.46       0.66       -4.64
                                                 
 Brazil Bovespa        49,128.48      -0.11      -4.62
                                                 
 Mexico IPC            41,984.94      0.18       -1.74
                                                 
 Chile IPSA            3,691.72       -0.34      -0.20
                                                 
 Chile IGPA            18,214.75      -0.29      -0.07
                                                 
 Argentina MerVal      5,896.82       0.64       9.38
                                                 
 Colombia IGBC         12,577.13      0.20       -3.78
                                                 
 Peru IGRA             16,486.44      0.13       4.65
                                                 
 Venezuela IBC         2,797.89       0.51       -99.90
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