December 28, 2018 / 1:32 PM / 6 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Currencies of Brazil, Mexico weaken in risk-off mood

    Dec 28 (Reuters) - The Brazilian real and the Mexican peso
failed to capitalize on  a weakness in the dollar on Friday as
risk appetite was kept at bay amid volatility in stock markets
and rising trade tensions. 
    The peso edged lower, while the real was 0.2
percent lower at 1316 GMT in its last day of trade for the year,
and was on course to log a loss of nearly 15 percent in 2018 -
its worst year since 2015.
    "This looks like a classic risk aversion trade in currency
markets," said Thu Lan Nguyen, an FX strategist at Commerzbank
in Frankfurt.
    On Thursday, U.S. stocks finished higher after trading lower
for most of the session, a day after the three main indices
marked their biggest daily surge in nearly a decade. They looked
set to open higher on Friday.
    The gyrations on Wall Street had spilled over into other
stock markets, leading to a volatile week for markets.
    Meanwhile, a report that Washington was considering an order
that could bar U.S. firms from using products made by China's
Huawei Technologies and ZTE had investors worried about an
escalation in the trade war between the two countries.

   But, tracking the global stock market rally, stocks in Sao
Paulo rose 1.5 percent, on track for its best day in
four weeks. The index looked set to post yearly gains for a
third straight year.  
    On the day, gains were broad-based with shares of state oil
company Petrobras being the top gainer.  
    In Chile, stocks hit their highest in a week,
and the currency also rose, in line with copper prices -
the country's main export.      
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1316 GMT:
    Stock indexes             Latest    Daily %    YTD %
                                         change    change
 MSCI Emerging Markets          961.36      0.95    -17.79
 MSCI LatAm                    2539.81      1.46    -11.49
 Brazil Bovespa               86682.15      1.43     13.46
 Mexico IPC                          -         -         -
 Chile IPSA                    5105.63      0.69      0.69
 Argentina MerVal                    -         -         -
 Colombia IGBC                       -         -         -
       Currencies             Latest    Daily %    YTD %
                                         change    change
 Brazil real                    3.8786      0.39    -14.57
 Mexico peso                   19.6902     -0.11      0.04
 Chile peso                      694.5      0.29    -11.50
 Colombia peso                    3278     -0.15     -9.03
 Peru sol                            -         -         -
 Argentina peso                      -         -         -
 Argentina peso                      -         -         -

 (Additional reporting by Saikat Chatterjee;
Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)
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