March 26, 2019 / 9:14 PM / 10 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies dip, Brazil shares break losing streak

 (Recasts throughout, updates prices)
    By Susan Mathew
    March 26 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies weakened on
Tuesday against a stronger dollar, while stocks mostly tracked a
resurgence in world stocks, with Brazil shares breaking a
five-session losing run.
    Mexico's peso lost 0.4 percent, while Chile's
currency extended losses to a fourth day, down 0.2
percent as the greenback ticked up after benchmark U.S. 10-year
Treasury debt yields rebounded from 15-month lows.
    The Colombian peso dipped 0.7 percent on returning
from a three-day weekend. Brazil's real slipped half a
percent to 3.8769, with tensions around the passing of crucial
pension reforms playing into its moves.  
    Brazil's Economy Minister Paulo Guedes skipped the first
congressional hearing on reform proposals and a bloc of 11
political parties demanded the removal of changes affecting
retirement benefits for rural and disabled workers.
    Guedes' appearance at the hearing was seen as a highlight of
pensions reform negotiations this week, amid growing concern the
government is disengaged from the process.
    If the reforms are not passed by the beginning of the second
half of the year, the real should trade between 3.90 and 4
reais, said Jaime Ferreira, head trader at Intercam brokerage in
Sao Paulo.
    Minutes of the Brazilian central bank's March meeting showed
policymakers are in no rush to raise interest rates as economic
growth slowed and inflation eased.
    "Market talks on immediate rate cuts might only be back in
the second half of 2019, if the pension reform advances
materially in Congress and if the economy continues to
disappoint," Mauricio Oreng, senior Brazil strategist at
Rabobank, wrote in a note.
    Stocks in Sao Paulo, however, jumped 1.8 percent,
after five straight days when it lost more than 6 percent.
Stocks rebounded globally on Tuesday as risk appetite improved
after worries of a recession clouded trading since late last
    State oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro drove gains on
the index, up more than 4 percent, as it tracked crude prices
    Mexican stocks climbed 0.3 percent. Investors in
Mexican assets await the central bank's interest rate decision
meeting on Thursday, when the bank is expected to stand pat on
    The market speculates that Banxico will adopt a less
restrictive language given the U.S. Federal Reserve's more
dovish pivot, analysts at Banco Base wrote in a note.
    Colombian equities rose for the tenth session in
eleven. Energy firm Ecopetrol SA tacked on 1.2 percent
as oil prices rose. Stocks in Chile and Argentina, however,
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2100 GMT:
    Stock indexes             Latest    Daily %
 MSCI Emerging Markets         1050.45      0.26
 MSCI LatAm                    2752.77      0.75
 Brazil Bovespa               95306.82      1.76
 Mexico IPC                   42826.16      0.29
 Chile IPSA                    5190.89     -0.05
 Argentina MerVal             32655.60     -1.54
 Colombia IGBC                13169.00      0.76
       Currencies             Latest    Daily %
 Brazil real                    3.8769    -0.509
 Mexico peso                   19.1030    -0.439
 Chile peso                      680.6     -0.12
 Colombia peso                  3153.9    -0.659
 Peru sol                        3.306     -0.12
 Argentina peso                42.6300     -1.29

 (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru and José de Castro in
Sao Paulo; Editing by Dan Grebler)
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