December 26, 2019 / 7:13 PM / 2 months ago

EMERGING MARKETS-Brazilian real posts strongest gains among Latam currencies; stocks mixed

    * Brazilian real firms at 4.05 against dollar
    * Chilean peso at highest levels since early Nov.
    * MSCI's Latam FX, stock indexes on pace for 4th weekly gain

 (Recasts, adds quote, updates prices)
    By Medha Singh
    Dec 26 (Reuters) - Brazil's real firmed against a tepid
dollar on Thursday, leading gains among most Latin American
currencies, while stocks in the region were mixed in thin volume
after Christmas.    
    The real ticked to its highest level in seven weeks
against the dollar after a two-day holiday. The Brazilian
currency has recently benefited from an improved outlook for the
country.    
    S&P Global Ratings could boost Brazil's sovereign rating if
a cut in its deficit as a percentage of GDP is confirmed, the
credit firm's lead analyst for the country said, helping support
the rise in the real.
    "We have an overweight on Brazil in Latam," said Jin Zhang,
portfolio manager and senior research analyst at Vontobel
Quality Growth, adding that the Latin American country "is very
much on the right track on reforms."
    The Chilean peso traded at levels not seen since
early November. A monthly poll of 61 traders showed the central
bank is expected to maintain Chile's interest rate at 1.75% for
the next 12 months until at least January 2021.
    The Chilean peso, Colombia peso and real were on
track for gains in the holiday-shortened week.
    Among stocks, Argentina's Merval index outperformed
its regional peers with its 7% jump, eyeing its biggest one-day
percentage surge in nearly four months. 
    Brazilian shares advanced 0.5% while Chile's stock
index dropped more than 1%.
    MSCI's indexes of Latin American currencies
and stocks were looking at their best monthly
percentage gain in 11 months as dissipating U.S. trade tensions
improved investor confidence in global growth and raised demand
for riskier bets.
    
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1848 GMT:
 Stock indexes                                       daily %
                                                      change
                                        Latest     
 MSCI Emerging Markets                    1111.52       0.21
 MSCI LatAm                               2926.55       0.64
 Brazil Bovespa                         116468.23       0.52
 Mexico IPC                              44085.86      -0.16
 Chile IPSA                               4668.53      -0.98
 Argentina MerVal                        42881.18      7.431
 Colombia IGBC                            1661.18      -0.33
                                                            
 Currencies                                          daily %
                                                      change
                                           Latest  
 Brazil real                               4.0613       0.41
 Mexico peso                              18.9534       0.08
 Chile peso                                 745.5       0.63
 Colombia peso                            3285.75       0.37
 Peru sol                                   3.319      -0.06
 Argentina peso (interbank)               59.8300       0.27
                                                   
    
    

 (Reporting by Medha Singh and Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru;
Editing by Cynthia Osterman)
  
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