* China reports stronger than expected Dec trade data
* Retailer Cia Hering plunges after sales miss expectations
* Brazil Bovespa flat, Mexico IPC falls 0.28 pct
By Asher Levine and Danielle Assalve
SAO PAULO, Jan 10 Brazilian stocks were choppy
on Thursday following stronger-than-expected Chinese export data
as shares of apparel retailer Cia Hering SA weighed.
Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index rose slightly
for the second straight day, gaining 0.05 percent to 61,612.43,
though volatility was high.
Mexico's IPC index snapped a two-day rally, while
Chile's bourse rose for the eighth straight session.
Steelmakers and commodities exporters contributed most to
the Bovespa index's gains after data Thursday showed China's
export growth rebounded surprisingly sharply to a seven-month
high in December.
China is Brazil's biggest trading partner and a key
purchaser of Latin American commodities exports such as
iron-ore, soy, copper and petroleum.
Shares of oil producer OGX Petroleo e Gas Participacoes SA
rose 5.6 percent, contributing most to the index's
gains, while shares of steelmaker Usinas Siderurgicas de Minas
Gerais SA added 1.1 percent.
Hering limited gains in the index, however,
falling more than 10 percent after the company reported
weaker-than-expected fourth quarter sales late on Wednesday.
"Sales rose a lot but they were below what the company
itself was expecting," said Fabio Goncalves, an analyst with
Banrisul in Porto Alegre, Brazil, adding that he saw the share
price fall as "exaggerated."
Brazil's Bovespa rose over 2.5 percent in the first week of
January but has given up some of those gains since, with
investors cautious over upcoming debt-ceiling negotiations in
the United States.
"Investors are shunning risk and no one wants to take a
position right now," said Ariovaldo Santos, an equities manager
with H.Commcor in Sao Paulo. "People are still lacking some
positive factor that would lead them to believe the market will
Mexico's IPC index fell its most in nearly a month,
losing 0.28 percent to 44,737.21 points.
A technical indicator known as the relative strength index
remained in "overbought" territory, however, indicating stocks
may be due to fall further in coming sessions.
Supermarket chain Grupo Chedraui fell 1
percent, contributing most to the index's loss, while
broadcaster Grupo Televisa fell 1.1 percent.
Chile's IPSA index rose 0.33 percent to 4,444.14,
boosted by a stronger outlook for Chinese demand for key export
copper following Thursday's trade data.
Retailers led gains in the index, with Cencosud up
2.1 percent and Falabella rising 0.75 percent.
Latin America's key stock indexes at 1522 GMT:
Stock indexes daily % YTD %
Latest change change
MSCI LatAm 3,914.28 0.26 2.8
Brazil Bovespa 61,612.43 0.05 1.08
Mexico IPC 44,737.21 -0.28 2.36
Chile IPSA 4,444.14 0.38 3.32
Chile IGPA 21,692.47 0.33 2.95
Argentina MerVal 3,115.56 1.42 9.15
Colombia IGBC 14,782.91 -0.23 0.46
Peru IGRA 21,688.92 0.47 5.14
Venezuela IBC 474,003.41 0 0.54