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EMERGING MARKETS-Colombian peso surges in catch-up trade, Latam FX muted

·3 min read
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* Colombian peso nears 1-mth high * Chile's peso recovers from constitution vote shock By Ambar Warrick May 18 (Reuters) - Colombia's peso rose in catch-up trade on Tuesday as dovish signals from the U.S. Federal Reserve buoyed risk assets, while Chile's peso recovered from its worst day in more than four months. Colombia's peso rose 0.8% to a near one-month high after a long weekend, supported by data last week that showed the Colombian economy grew by more than expected in the first quarter. But anti-government protests, which began in late-April against a now withdrawn tax reform, have dampened the country's economic outlook and had sent the peso to a six-month low recently. Gains in oil prices also supported the peso, as investors bet on a boost to crude demand from Europe and the United States reopening their economies. "The energy complex is shrugging off angst surrounding COVID-19 flare-ups in Asia, as the global reopening is set to translate into an incredible demand story this summer," analysts at TD Securities wrote in a note. Broader sentiment was widely risk-on, as comments from the Fed on Monday suggested that U.S. interest rates would be static until at least next year. This weighed on the dollar and Treasury yields, helping riskier assets. Positive economic growth data also helped sentiment, while rising inflation expectations this year saw many emerging market central banks either beginning to tighten policy, or signaling that they will. Brazil's real, which has benefited from a recent tightening spree by the country's central bank, was muted on Tuesday, after the government raised its inflation and economic growth outlook for 2021. Chile's peso rose slightly after marking its worst day in more than four months on Monday. Chilean stocks also recovered from their worst day in more than a year, after the country's ruling center-right coalition failed to secure a critical one-third of seats in the body that will draft a new constitution, increasing the chances of more radical, investment-unfriendly proposals. Data showed the Chilean economy grew lesser-than-expected in the first quarter. Mexico's peso dropped 0.3% as talks began on Monday over the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) Free Trade Commission, which centers on the trade accord that last year replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies: Latest Daily % change MSCI Emerging Markets 1332.69 1.62 MSCI LatAm 2506.52 0.07 Brazil Bovespa 122688.99 -0.2 Mexico IPC 49743.60 0.75 Chile IPSA 4242.20 2.27 Argentina MerVal 0.00 0 Colombia COLCAP 1282.84 -0.54 Currencies Latest Daily % change Brazil real 5.2731 -0.14 Mexico peso 19.8316 -0.32 Chile peso 713.8 0.20 Colombia peso 3654.33 0.78 Peru sol 3.71 0.08 Argentina peso 94.1600 -0.02 (interbank) (Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru Editing by Alistair Bell)

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