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Brazil Markets Rebound: Stocks Close Up 3.6%, Real Stronger

RIO DE JANEIRO (Dow Jones)–Brazilian blue-chip shares and the real currency rebounded from the recent sell-off Friday, with the benchmark Ibovespa index breaking a six-session losing streak to once again trade above 60,000 points.

The Ibovespa stocks index closed 3.6% higher at 60,259 points Friday, up from Thursday’s close at 58,192 points. Volume was moderate at 6.51 billion Brazilian reals ($3.51 billion). Despite the rise, the index was still down 12% so far in 2010 and nearly 11% in May.

The real currency, meanwhile, strengthened to BRL1.8560 to the dollar in a volatile session on the BM&FBovespa exchange, stronger from Thursday’s close at BRL1.8610.

Local shares tracked gains on Wall Street after the U.S. Senate approved a regulatory overhaul for the financial sector, analysts said.

Global financial markets also got a reprieve from a slight recovery in the euro, despite remaining uncertainties amid the ongoing fiscal crisis in the European Union. Earlier Friday, Germany’s parliament approved its portion of the EUR750 billion E.U.-International Monetary Fund stabilization package.

Base metals prices rebounded on the euro’s renewed vigor. The commodities-heavy Ibovespa also closely tracks movements in global commodities prices.

Miner Vale SA (VALE, VALE5.BR) soared 7.4% to BRL40.29 after rival Rio Tinto (RTP) confirmed that it had agreed to second-quarter iron ore price adjustments with steelmakers. Vale, however, denied that third-quarter prices had been set.

State-run energy giant Petroleo Brasileiro (PBR, PETR4.BR) continued to underperform the market, rising 0.6% to BRL27.58 after the company called for a shareholders meeting to approve its share offer plans. Petrobras asked shareholders to approve a capital increase of up to BRL90 billion. Proceeds from the share sale will be used to fund development of recently discovered offshore oil fields.

Independent driller OGX Petroleo e Participacoes (OGXP3.BR) more closely tracked a rise in international oil prices, adding 3.4% to BRL15.22. Oil prices bounced back above $70 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Real estate developers also led the charge Friday after U.S. investor Samuel Zell’s Equity International said it would raise $500 million with an eye toward investments in Brazil’s construction sector.

Cyrela (CYRE3.BR) jumped 3.9% at 19.10, while Gafisa (GFSA3.BR) gained 7.2% to BRL11.00 and PDG (PDGR3.BR) soared 6.4% to BRL14.48.

Steelmakers were broadly higher, with flat steel maker Usiminas (USIM5.BR) climbing 5.2% to BRL45.40. Long steel giant Gerdau (GGB) added 4.6% to BRL23.79 and CSN (SID) increased 6.1% to BRL26.48.

Among the session’s few losers were airlines, with leading carrier TAM SA (TAM, TAMM4.BR) sliding 1.1% to BRL25.00 and discount carrier Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes (GOL, GOLL4.BR) slipping 0.2% to BRL20.80. The recent strength of the dollar was expected to weigh on airlines’ bottom lines because of the large percentage of dollar-denominated debt the companies carry.

Brewer AmBev (ABV) climbed 2.9% to end at BRL173.89, while cosmetics maker Natura (NATU3.BR) tumbled 1.1% to BRL37.08.

Leading telecommunications company Oi (TNE) gained 1.2% to end at BRL27.19.

Meanwhile, Brazil’s benchmark Global 40 bond ended 1 higher at a bid of 133 1/2.

-By Jeff Fick, Dow Jones Newswires; 55-21-2586-6085; Jeff.Fick@dowjones.com • source: The Wall Street Journal

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