December 4, 2019 / 3:16 PM / 4 days ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks rise on U.S.-China trade hopes; Brazil index at record high

    * Brazil stocks up as much as 0.8%
    * Chilean assets rise ahead of C.bank decision, rate cut
likely
    * Chile rate cut to be close call- Analyst
    * Mexican, Colombian pesos up on strong oil prices

    By Ambar Warrick
    Dec 4 (Reuters) - Latin American stock markets rose on
Wednesday as U.S. President Donald Trump voiced more optimism
than he did a day earlier about trade talks with China, and
Brazilian equities mounted a record high, with an investment
manager telling a Reuters forum the country was his top regional
investment pick. 
    Trump said that trade talks with China were going "very
well." On Tuesday, he had flagged a possible delay
in reaching a deal. 
    A basket of Latin American stocks rose to a
more than one-week high, pushed up mainly by a jump in Brazilian
equities. Luiz Ribeiro, manager of the Latin America
Equity Fund at asset manager DWS Group, said the
region was poised for growth to rebound to nearly 2% in 2020
after years of underperformance.
    Ribeiro, who oversees $630 million in assets, told the
Reuters Global Markets Forum that Brazil was his top investment
pick in the region.
    Financials and energy stocks, which got a boost from
stronger oil prices, were the best performers on the Bovespa.

    Industrial production in Brazil rose 0.8% in October,
official figures showed, the third month in a row of growth
after a steep decline. Data also showed overall
business activity in the country remained unchanged in November
from the prior month.  
    Chilean stocks bounced back from a near three-week
low touched on Tuesday. The Chilean peso also rose,
supported by stronger prices for top export copper.
    Early this week, the Chilean central bank launched a large
intervention program to support the floundering peso.
    Investors awaited an interest rate decision from Chile's
central bank, scheduled for later in the day. A Reuters poll
expects a cut, although analysts say it could be a close call.
    "We've penciled in a cut, but are less confident about (a
cut) than were a few days ago," said William Jackson, chief
emerging markets economist at Capital Economics. 
    "The pace of the fall in the peso over the past few days
started to worry policymakers... We saw the start of the quite
large intervention program, which suggested they thought the
currency may have overshot it, and they're trying to push back
against that."
    An index of Latin American currencies rose
about 0.2%, with the dollar also retreating after data showed
U.S. private-sector job growth unexpectedly slowed to its
weakest pace in six months in November.
    The currencies of oil exporters Mexico and Colombia
 also rose on stronger prices. 
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at  1437 GMT
 
    Stock indexes             Latest    Daily %
                                         change
 MSCI Emerging Markets         1037.60      0.02
                                        
 MSCI LatAm                    2688.63      0.87
                                        
 Brazil Bovespa              109635.12      0.62
                                        
 Mexico IPC                          -         -
                                        
 Chile IPSA                    4505.74      0.29
                                        
 Argentina MerVal             33225.91     1.432
                                        
 Colombia COLCAP               1591.09      0.07
                                        
                                                
       Currencies             Latest    Daily %
                                         change
 Brazil real                    4.1901      0.36
                                        
 Mexico peso                   19.4978      0.26
                                        
 Chile peso                     795.15      0.94
                                        
 Colombia peso                  3475.5      0.70
 Peru sol                        3.383      0.18
                                        
 Argentina peso                59.8900      0.05
 (interbank)                            
                                        
 
 (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by David
Gregorio)
  
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