Wednesday, October 27

China Evergrande contagion fears take toll across markets


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Concerns over fallout from a possible

default by property developer China Evergrande sent emerging

market bonds into a downward spiral on Monday, while stocks in

Latin America hit their lowest level in nearly six months.

Also hanging over emerging market assets were central bank

meetings this week including in Brazil and Turkey and widely-

awaited clues on stimulus tapering from the US Federal

Reserve.

Declines between 0.2% and 1.2% for Latam currencies deepened

the pain for MSCI’s index of EM currencies.

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Brazil’s real stayed at four-week lows ahead of an

expected 100 basis points interest rate cut on Wednesday.

Shares in cash-strapped Evergrande hit decade

lows, while property stocks in Hong Kong were also hit on

Monday. The firm has begun repaying investors in its wealth

management products with real estate.

“Evergrande has the potential to be the largest corporate

debt default ever, with spillovers to other financial

institutions, Evergrande’s suppliers, homeowners, wealth product

holders and other property companies,” said Alan Ruskin, macro

strategist at Deutsche Bank.

“Not surprisingly, analysts are scurrying around for touch

points on where Evergrande might trigger contagion, within China

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and internationally.”

The cost of insuring China against default rose to a near

one-year high, IHS Markit data showed.

As of last week, a metric of Asian high yield debt

had fallen to April lows, while the corporate bonds

counterpart touched June 2020 lows.

China markets were closed for a holiday.

Elsewhere, bonds in South Africa, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Costa

Rica and El Salvador bonds were all hit.

Among stocks, those in Chile sank almost 4%, while shares in

Brazil, South Africa and Poland lost

more than 2%, with Sao Paulo stocks hitting 6-1/2 month lows.

The MSCI’s index for Latam stocks fell 3.2%,

to its lowest level since late March.

Those in Russia, Turkey and Mexico

were well in the red too.

The heavily-controlled Argentine peso fell about

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0.2% as investors remained uncertain about economic policy

outlook after a bruising primary election defeat for the

government led to a Cabinet reshuffle on Friday.

Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1958 GMT:

Stock indexes Latest Daily%

change

MSCI Emerging Markets 1256.07 -1.82

MSCI LatAm 2259.22 -2.64

Brazil Bovespa 108701.77 -2.46

Mexico IPC 50552.12 -1.47

Chile IPSA 4291.36 -3.9

Argentina MerVal 73758.67 -6.054

Colombia COLCAP 1306.31 -1.18

Currencies Latest Daily%

change

Brazil real 5.3344 -0.89

Mexico peso 20.1310 -0.58

Chile peso 788.4 -0.76

Colombia peso 3839.04 -0.36

Peru sol 4.118 -0.44

Argentina peso (interbank) 98.4600 -0.10

Argentina peso (parallel) 181 2.21

(Reporting by Susan Mathew and Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru;

Editing by Alexander Smith and Alistair Bell)

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