Latin American markets are mixed, with the Brazilian Ibovespa
market index down nearly 2% with the country's central bank widely
expected later today to cut its policy interest rate by another
0.5% to 7.5%. That would mark the ninth consecutive rate reduction.
The country's central bank already cut interest rates by 5%.
Also, Argentina's government, unions and industry leaders
yesterday agreed to raise the minimum wage by 25% as inflation
shows few signs of cooling despite a slowdown in Latin America's
No. 3 economy. The minimum salary will rise in two stages to 2,875
pesos a month (US$621) from the current 2,300 pesos a month,
although the full pay hike will not take effect until February. It
is the ninth straight year the Argentine government has increased
the minimum wage.
Here's where the regional markets stand this afternoon:
- Ibovespa down 1,019.12 (-1.7%) to 57,387.28.
- IPC (Mexico City) up 98.20 (+0.25%) to 40,049.40
- Santiago Index IPSA up 3.18 (+0.08%) to 4,160.96
- Merval Buenos Aires down 5.64 (-0.23%) to 2,441.62
In company news, Vale SA (
) ADRs are down nearly 4% and have hit new year lows. But its not
alone as many miners are lower. Equipment supplier Joy Global (
) is down albeit about $3 above day lows as it reported weaker than
expected Q3 results and slashed its full-year earning guidance.
JOY cut its FY12 profit outlook to $7.05 to $7.20 a share from
its previous forecast for per-share earning in a range of $7.15 to
$7.45. The Street is at $7.26 a share. The company earlier cut its
sales guidance, citing the ongoing switch from coal to natural gas
as an energy source cutting into demand for electric shovels,
blasthole drills and other mining equipment.
) has lost 1% and Rio Tinto (
) slumped near 3%