* Vale expects better profit this year after Q4 loss
* U.S. GDP data disappoints, weighs on Petrobras
* Brazil Bovespa gains 0.43 pct, Mexico IPC up 0.15 pct
By Asher Levine and Danielle Assalve
SAO PAULO, Feb 28 Brazilian stocks rose on
Thursday with shares of iron-ore mining firm Vale advancing on
its outlook for improved profit, but concerns over U.S. economic
growth weighed on oil producers.
Other Latin American bourses also firmed. Chile's IPSA index
rose after data suggested the outlook for the country's
economy remains strong, while Mexico's IPC index gained
for a second straight session.
Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index climbed for
the third straight day, adding 0.43 percent to 57,519.71 as a
technical momentum indicator known as the MACD posted a
so-called "bullish cross," suggesting the index could rise
further in coming sessions.
Preferred shares of mining firm Vale rose 1.75
percent, contributing most to the index's gains.
Vale shares opened lower on Thursday after the company
posted its first quarterly loss in 10 years late Wednesday,
though rebounded later in the session after the firm said it
expects higher iron ore prices and gold production to bring
profit this year.
"The results had been priced-in over recent weeks," said
Felipe Rocha, an analyst with brokerage Omar Camargo in
Curitiba, Brazil. "The market is now going to be watching the
outlook for ore prices, sales, and the Chinese economy."
China is Vale's No. 1 customer and a key export market for
other Latin American commodities such as soybeans, copper and
Gains in the Bovespa were limited by shares of
state-controlled oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA,
known as Petrobras, which fell 0.4 percent.
Analysts said disappointing fourth-quarter U.S. economic
growth data on Thursday weighed on widely-traded shares such as
Petrobras, which tend to attract a large proportion of foreign
investors and move in tandem with the outlook for the global
Shares of Gol Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes SA,
Brazil's No. 2 airline, rose 3.3 percent after the company filed
a plan late on Wednesday to list its customer loyalty program
unit Smiles SA on the São Paulo Stock Exchange.
Mexico's IPC index rose for the second straight day,
adding 0.15 percent to 43,838.59.
Homebuilder Urbi fell 1.5 percent after the
company reported a 63 percent fall in fourth-quarter profits
late on Wednesday due to a slump in sales and higher financing
Bottling and retail firm Femsa fell 0.3 percent
after the company said fourth-quarter profit, which rose 77
percent, was boosted by a one-off gain in earnings from Dutch
brewer Heineken, in which Femsa holds a roughly 20
Chile's IPSA index gained 0.21 percent to 4,530.22
as shares of retailer Falabella added 0.3 percent.
Data on Thursday suggested the outlook for Chile's economy
remains strong, with manufacturing output beating expectations,
unemployment at a six-year low and copper production rising.
Latin America's key stock indexes at 1521 GMT:
Stock indexes daily % YTD %
Latest change change
MSCI LatAm 3,812.24 0.45 -0.07
Brazil Bovespa 57,519.71 0.43 -5.63
Mexico IPC 43,838.59 0.15 0.30
Chile IPSA 4,530.22 0.21 5.32
Chile IGPA 22,104.11 0.18 4.91
Argentina MerVal 3,087.29 -2.26 8.16
Colombia IGBC 14,885.09 0.30 1.15
Peru IGRA 20,632.47 -0.04 0.02
Venezuela IBC 618,924.56 0 31.28