RIO DE JANEIRO, April 23 Latin American markets
fell on Wednesday as concerns over Chinese factory growth
dragged on mining stocks and the currencies of countries that
rely on commodity exports to China.
MSCI's benchmark stock index for Latin America
dropped 0.4 percent in a second session of
losses after data showed China's factory activity shrank for the
fourth straight month in April.
"The Chinese data left investors more defensive toward
emerging markets, especially those that rely on commodities
(exports)," said Luciano Rostagno, chief strategist with Mizuho
bank in Sao Paulo.
Shares of Brazil's Vale SA, the world's largest
iron ore producer, dropped 0.6 percent and weighed heavily on
the country's benchmark Bovespa index, which edged down
Shares of homebuilders Gafisa and Even
also pulled the Bovespa lower. They dropped 3.2 percent and 2.6
percent, respectively, following the release of their
operational performances late on Tuesday.
In foreign exchange markets, most Latin American currencies
weakened as investors remained cautious about the impact of the
Chinese economic slowdown in the region.
Continued dollar inflows from investors seeking Brazil's
high interest rates cushioned the real's losses. The Brazilian
currency last traded at 2.2425 per dollar, only
0.1 percent weaker on the day.
Analysts said the Brazilian central bank is likely to keep
the current pace of forex intervention since the real quickly
lost value after reaching a five-month high of 2.18 per dollar
on April 9.
Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1455 GMT:
Stock indexes daily % YTD %
Latest change change
MSCI Emerging Markets 1004.04 -0.46 0.6
MSCI LatAm 3241.27 -0.4 1.67
Brazil Bovespa 51775.91 -0.39 0.52
Mexico IPC 40343.97 -0.31 -5.58
Chile IPSA 3879.85 0.03 4.88
Chile IGPA 19064.55 0.08 4.59
Argentina MerVal 6656.82 0.71 23.48
Colombia IGBC 13544.29 -0.78 3.62
Peru IGRA 14844.45 0.29 -5.77
Venezuela IBC 2456.51 0 -10.23
Currencies daily % YTD %
Brazil real 2.2425 -0.08 5.10
Mexico peso 13.08 -0.17 -0.38
Chile peso 564 -0.34 -6.72
Colombia peso 1936.54 -0.16 -0.23
Peru sol 2.792 -0.32 0.04
Argentina peso 8.0000 0.03 -18.84
Argentina peso 10.37 0.29 -3.57
(Reporting by Walter Brandimarte, Priscila Jordao and Bruno
Federowski; Editing by Dan Grebler)