* IMF reduces global economic growth outlook
* Brazil investors eye interest rates, index futures options
* Brazil Bovespa falls 1.25 pct, Mexico IPC down 0.93 pct
By Asher Levine
SAO PAULO, April 17 Latin American stocks fell
on Wednesday, on track for the lowest close of the year, as
concerns over global economic growth pushed shares of
commodities-exporting companies lower.
The MSCI Latin American stock index fell for
the fourth session in five, losing 1.57 percent to 3,668.61,
which is below its lowest close since December.
Shares fell after the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday
trimmed projections for global growth for this year and next,
adding to investor jitters caused by weaker-than-expected
Chinese growth data on Monday.
Brazil's commodities-heavy benchmark Bovespa stock index
lost 1.25 percent as the Reuters/Jefferies CRB index
of the 19 most-traded agricultural, energy and metals
commodities fell for the fifth session in six.
Iron-ore mining firm Vale slipped 1.75 percent,
while state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA,
known as Petrobras, shed 1.8 percent.
Shares of oil company OGX Petroleo e Gas Participacoes SA
dropped 3 percent after the company, which has
struggled to meet production targets, said on Tuesday that
output at its offshore oil wells fell in March.
Analysts said investors will remain cautious before the
Brazilian central bank's decision about the benchmark interest
rate, due after the market closes.
"If the bank starts raising rates today, it will negatively
affect homebuilders and the consumption sector and could
possibly help banks," said Luis Gustavo Pereira, a strategist
with Futura Corretora in Sao Paulo.
Pereira added that investors will monitor the expiration of
options on index futures, due at the end of the session.
"Foreign investors are very short on the index. If we see a
lot of them rolling over their positions, it could mean more
downward pressure on the index going forward," he said.
Mexico's IPC index fell for the third session in
four, losing 0.93 percent to 42,822.89.
Shares of mining firm Grupo Mexico lost 3.13
percent to 44.22 pesos, their lowest price this year.
Chile's IPSA index fell 0.69 percent to 4,231.66 as
shares of retailer Falabella lost 0.8 percent.
Latin America's key stock indexes at 1433 GMT:
Stock indexes daily % YTD %
Latest change change
MSCI LatAm 3,668.61 -1.57 -1.86
Brazil Bovespa 53,316.44 -1.25 -12.53
Mexico IPC 42,822.89 -0.93 -2.02
Chile IPSA 4,231.66 -0.69 -1.62
Chile IGPA 20,849.37 -0.58 -1.05
Argentina MerVal 3,454.15 -0.55 21.02
Colombia IGBC 13,361.69 -0.19 -9.20
Peru IGRA 18,365.12 -0.66 -10.98
Venezuela IBC 641,807.81 0 36.14