EMERGING MARKETS-Latam FX, stocks rally with eyes on central bank moves

·3 min read

* Brazil's central bank seen hiking by 100 bp * Mexico's peso lifts off three-week lows * Brazil's stock index snaps 5-day losing streak; Gol rallies * Argentina to roll out stimulus package (Adds comments, updates prices throughout) By Susan Mathew and Shreyashi Sanyal Sept 21 (Reuters) - Most Latin American currencies ticked higher against a weaker dollar on Tuesday, and stocks rallied as markets made cautious gains after a sell-off last session on worries about the impact from problems at Chinese developer China Evergrande. As a Thursday deadline for $83.5 million in interest relating to its March 2022 bond nears, analysts fear for the momentum of the Chinese economy, where growth is already slowing. "China's status as a global growth driver can have implications for the growth differential between emerging markets and developed markets," said Natalia Gurushina, an emerging markets fixed income economist at VanEck. "Against this backdrop, this week's monetary policy decisions in the U.S. and major EMs will be of utmost importance." The U.S. Federal Reserve on Wednesday is expected to set the stage for stimulus tapering, which could see a negative reaction from risk assets. Brazil's real rose 0.9% as its central bank is seen hiking by 100 basis points on Wednesday. "We expect the Committee to hike the Selic rate by 100 bps, as indicated in the previous meeting due to pernicious secondary effects of 21H2 inflation shocks and high inflation expectations in the monetary policy horizon, taking the policy rate to 6.25%," strategists at Rabobank wrote in a client note. Hungary's forint fell against the euro just after a smaller-than-expected hike in interest rates, but erased losses to trade 0.3% higher after the central bank said it would continue to raise the key rate through the fourth quarter. As copper prices rose, largest producer Chile's peso rose 0.4%, while Mexico's peso lifted further off three-week lows hit last session. In Argentina, the government is expected to begin rolling out an economic stimulus package from Tuesday, as center-left president Alberto Fernandez tries claw back support after a bruising primary election defeat a week ago. Markets on Monday were rattled by a cabinet reshuffle aimed at maintaining the ruling coalition. A Reuters poll showed Argentina's economy likely jumped 17.2% year-on-year in the second quarter. The country also unveiled plans to ease COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, including loosening strict border controls, allowing more commercial activities. Among stocks, Brazilian airline Gol rose 3.6% on signing a electric air taxi deal with leasing company Avolon. Brazil's Bovespa stock index rose 1.5%, breaking a five-session losing streak and moving away from Monday's 6-1/2 month lows. Chile's IPSA index recovered 0.4% after the previous session's near 4% slide. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1842 GMT: Stock indexes Latest Daily % change MSCI Emerging Markets 1260.42 0.17 MSCI LatAm 2300.15 1.77 Brazil Bovespa 110451.30 1.48 Mexico IPC 50854.59 0.59 Chile IPSA 4310.27 0.44 Argentina MerVal 74468.76 1.132 Colombia COLCAP 1305.61 -0.08 Currencies Latest Daily % change Brazil real 5.2800 0.90 Mexico peso 20.1051 0.16 Chile peso 786.4 0.25 Colombia peso 3834.78 0.18 Peru sol 4.108 0.24 Argentina peso (interbank) 98.4700 0.00 Argentina peso (parallel) 181 1.66 (Reporting by Susan Mathew, Lisa Pauline Mattackal and Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; Editing by Andrea Ricci)

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