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RPT-EMERGING MARKETS-Latam currencies, stocks climb on positive vaccine data

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    * Brazil stocks at highest level since March 5
    * Peru's sol weakens on fears of political vacuum 
    * Stronger oil prices boost Mexican, Colombian pesos

    By Shriya Ramakrishnan
    Nov 16 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks and currencies rose
on Monday after positive results for a second COVID-19 vaccine
lifted risk appetite, while political uncertainty limited gains
in Peru's sol after its interim leader resigned over the
weekend. 
    Drugmaker Moderna Inc said its experimental vaccine
was 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 based on interim data
from a late-stage clinical trial, making it the second U.S.
drugmaker to report results that exceed expectations.

    The announcement sparked a rally across global markets on
hopes for a swifter economic recovery from the pandemic. 
    Brazil's real was the top performer in Latam, rising
1.2%, while Sao Paulo stocks jumped as much as 1.5% to a
more than eight-month high.
    Risk sentiment was further boosted by a Brazilian central
bank survey, which showed 2020 economic growth outlook improving
slightly for Latin America's largest economy.
    Peru's sol weakened 0.3% and the country's sovereign
dollar bonds turned lower, after lawmakers failed to name a
successor to departed interim president Manuel Merino.

    The political upheaval adds to uncertainty facing Peru, the
world's no. 2 copper producer, already battling the coronavirus
pandemic and what is expected to be its worst economic
contraction in a century.
    "The recent events just underline our view that the former
market consensus of Peru as a stable country must be
questioned," analysts at Credit Suisse said in a note.
    "We reiterate our opinion that Peru's sovereign debt ratings
could be subject to a downgrade by all major rating agencies, as
the economic underperformance has been stronger than expected
and the political turmoil has persisted."
    Pfizer Inc's earlier vaccine update had also spurred
optimism in the region last week, although most Latin American
currencies ended the week lower as doubts about the availability
and delivery of the vaccine crept in.
    "If last week was any guide, the positive sentiment might be
short-lived. While unambiguously good news, we think markets are
overestimating the timing and scalability of vaccine
implementation," Mazen Issa, senior FX strategist at TD
Securities cautioned in a note.
    Still, most emerging market currencies clocked gains during
the day as increased risk appetite globally reduced the U.S.
dollar's safe-haven appeal. 
    Mexico's peso rose 0.6%, while Colombia's peso
added about 0.2%, with both the currencies further supported by
strength in oil prices.
    Local markets in Mexico and Colombia were shut for a
holiday.  
    A gauge of Latin American stocks jumped more
than 2%, while stocks in Chile climbed to a more than
three-month high.   
    But Chile's peso came under pressure and was set for
a third consecutive session of declines, weighed down by threats
of strikes at some of its copper mines.
    Chile, the world's top copper producer, is highly
susceptible to swings in prices of the commodity.
    
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies:
    
    
                                Latest    Daily % change
 MSCI Emerging Markets           1204.65            1.37
                                          
 MSCI LatAm                      2127.00             2.2
                                          
 Brazil Bovespa                105483.15            0.73
 Chile IPSA                      4067.42            1.55
 Argentina MerVal                      -               - Currencies              Latest    Daily % change
 Brazil real                      5.4087            1.21
                                          
 Mexico peso                     20.2710            0.60
                                          
 Chile peso                        769.4           -0.39
                                          
 Colombia peso                   3634.11            0.19
 Peru sol                         3.6497           -0.25
 Argentina peso (interbank)      79.9500           -0.25
                                          
 
 (Reporting by Shriya Ramakrishnan in Bengaluru; Editing by
Edmund Blair and Bernadette Baum)
  
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