May 8, 2019 / 3:43 PM / a year ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies gain against soft dollar, Brazil stocks rise

    By Agamoni Ghosh
    May 8 (Reuters) - Latin American currencies, benefiting from
a soft dollar, rose on Wednesday on growing concerns about the
escalating trade dispute between China and the United States,
while stocks in Brazil gained. 
    U.S. President Donald Trump confirmed through a tweet on
Wednesday that Chinese officials were coming to Washington to
work out a deal and possibly end a lengthy trade disagreement 
between the world's largest economies. 
    Caution, however, remained as the president warned that if a
deal was not finalized, tariffs $200 billion of Chinese goods
would rise beginning on Friday. 
    Brazil's real led gains among currencies. Data showed
inflation in Brazil as measured by the IGP-DI price index rose
0.90 percent in April, compared with a 1.07 percent gain in
    Chile's peso rose marginally but Mexico's peso
slid as oil prices moved lower on U.S.-Chinese trade jitters.
    MSCI's index of Latin American stocks rose
more than 1 percent, outperforming the overall emerging markets
index, which slipped about half a percent. 
    Sao Paulo-traded stocks rose 1.5 percent after two
straight sessions of losses. 
    Brazilian steelmaker Gerdau was among the top
gainers after the company said it expected the Brazilian economy
to recover and demand for construction steel in the United
States to grow in 2019. 
    Echoing a similar positive sentiment, Moody's said on
Wednesday that stronger fundamentals have helped trim liquidity
risk for most Brazilian sectors.
    Preferred shares of gun maker Taurus rose 14
percent after Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro signed a decree
easing access to guns and ammunition.
    Vale was among the few weak spots after it
reported a slump in its iron ore production for the first
quarter, reflecting the impact of the deadly collapse of a
tailings dam at Brumadinho in late January.
    Mexican stocks dropped 0.3 percent, while Chile's
IPSA index fell about half a percent, dragged lower
by lithium producer Sociedad Quimica y Minera.
 Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1430  GMT
 Stock indexes                        daily %    YTD %
                             Latest    change   change
 MSCI Emerging Markets       1050.37    -0.63     9.46
 MSCI LatAm                  2708.47     1.68     3.81
 Brazil Bovespa             95949.13     1.65     9.17
 Mexico IPC                 43569.59    -0.03     4.63
 Chile IPSA                  5048.95    -0.58    -0.58
 Argentina MerVal           33332.38     1.81    10.03
 Colombia IGBC              12469.97     0.29    11.90
 Currencies                           daily %    YTD %
                                       change   change
 Brazil real                  3.9329     0.90   -15.75
 Mexico peso                 19.0802    -0.25     3.24
 Chile peso                    684.6     0.03   -10.22
 Colombia peso                3281.8     0.51    -9.14
 Peru sol                      3.315    -0.06    -2.35
 Argentina peso              44.9100     0.87   -58.58

 (Reporting by Agamoni Ghosh)
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