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Mexican Market Leaps Forward – FIX, Technology, Co-Location and Regulation

In the last 12 months dramatic changes have occurred at Mexico’s stock exchange and among its brokerage clients. Cross border partnerships, technology upgrades, new FIX infrastructure and business friendly regulatory changes have opened the Mexican market to high frequency trading (HFT).

While US regulators can be seen to scold HFT firms, the Mexican market has opened its arms. The Mexican Exchange (BMV) and its brokerage firms have upgraded their infrastructure and sought business opportunities north of the border. Earlier this year after the CME Group and the BMV signed their partnership, high frequency traders on the CME Globex trading system began to route orders to the Mexican Derivatives Exchange or MexDer. Today 90 percent of average daily volume on the MexDer comes from high frequency traders north of the border.

Mexico’s brokerage firms have completed significant infrastructure upgrades. Last spring only a few brokers in Mexico could handle a highfrequency hedge fund client and many Mexican brokers could process no more than one connection to the Bolsa Mexicana de Valores (BMV) at a time. The landscape has changed quickly and improvements in broker and exchange systems have ushered in a new capacity for speed in the transmission and execution of orders in Mexico.

Over the summer a major milestone occurred for the industry. Working with the BMV, Mexico’s brokers completed an industry-wide upgrade to FIX 4.4. The top 25 brokers are now certified with FIX 4.4 to the BMV. Leading the way, are brokerages like GBM, Interacciones, Actinver, UBS Mexico, IXE and others.

Now that Mexican brokers speak FIX 4.4, all of the order routing to the BMV can now be done through FIX allowing the BMV to retire the antiquated SETRIB protocol. The only way the BMV will allow Mexican brokers to continue to use SETRIB is by paying excessive fees, and even this will not be allowed by the end of 2011. Retiring SETRIB sets the stage for more positive changes in the industry and at the BMV.

Work is already underway to upgrade the BMV’s trade matching engine. The existing engine was built in the 1990s for a Tandem mainframe. Retiring the Tandem has many benefits. Faster order matching and processing is high on the list. In addition, more choices for application and software vendors and significant cost savings are expected. Retiring the mainframe will also eliminate the scheduling nightmares associated with the limited availability of the central mainframe for testing with the broker community. The new matching engine will be hosted on modern Unix based hardware. The release of the new matching engine and infrastructure is planned for the first quarter of 2012.

Another important milestone is the availability of a state-of-the-art co-location facility at KIO Santa Fe. The BMV infrastructure is located here and starting in October it will be easy for brokers and third party providers to collocate order routing and market data in this hosting facility leading to high throughput low latency services.

While all of the infrastructure and matching engine upgrades are momentous, they would bear no fruit without the simultaneous modernization of Mexican regulations. The initiative to modernize Mexico’s regulations, called RINO, began a year ago and phase two is due to rollout in the fall of 2011. The goal of RINO is to conform Mexican regulations to international standards. By converging with international standards, regulators hope to bring more international order flow and greater liquidity to the market, resulting in increased investment in the Mexican market.

While regulations in the US like Sarbanes Oxley and Dodd-Frank can be seen to drive businesses offshore, the regulatory changes in Mexico are removing handcuffs from businesses and facilitating opportunities. The first step forward occurred early this year with RINO I. RINO I allowed brokers to have multiple channels to the BMV’s electronic trading system. Previously all orders were in a single queue. Multiple access points per broker provides more flexibility in executing strategies and handling client requests, including separate BMV channels for program trading and orders called into the trading desk. RINO I also eliminated sizebased criteria from order management,  thus leveling the playing field in the processing of orders. RINO II takes effect on October 10, 2011, bringing more modernizations including pegged orders, improvements in crossing operations, average price operations, price delivery regardless of volume, and decimal bids for fixed income securities.

Crosses, in which a brokerage carries out a transaction through the stock exchange between two of its clients, were permitted previously but the rules were very arcane. Starting in October, the crossing operations will be vastly simplified allowing clients to simply choose whether to cross inside or outside the spread. With this modernization, the BMV hopes to repatriate orders that brokers would previously carry out in the US, where crossing orders was possible using ADRs in dark pools or at the NYSE.

In addition the RINO II regulations a very important new mid-point hidden book order. The orders execute at the midpoint, broker anonymity is guaranteed and the order priority is determined by volume. This is effectively a dark pool. Similar to Xetra, this new BMV order helps the market participants and simultaneously protects the BMV from  providers toying with moving into the Mexican marketplace.

As the regulations modernize and the FIX infrastructure hardens, opportunity beckons. Brokers are beginning to push for more high frequency trading algorithms, more efficient routing of international orders, and more sophisticated risk controls, all of which will attract even more international business. As the need for speed grows, co-location previously offered by the exchange may become more strategic, particularly to brokers wanting to attract high frequency traders.

All of this progress was made possible in large part because of the exchange’s demutualization and subsequent listing in 2008. The demutualization coincided with rule changes allowing Mexico’s pension funds or AFORES to invest. Before the rule changes, the AFORES were forced to invest almost entirely in short-term government paper. Today, Mexico’s pension funds are allowed to invest up to 25 percent, in individual stocks and shares and 12 percent in a hybrid of corporate debt and equity capital to allow companies to raise funds to expand businesses.

Considered together, regulatory improvements and infrastructure updates have morphed the BMV and the Mexican brokerage community into a thriving and modern marketplace. The BMV reported a 22 percent jump in earnings last year, with operating income increasing 70 percent in the last three months. A record six initial public offerings made it to market last year and overall trading volumes rose 50 percent in 2010. This year Mexico’s IPC index has tested and hovered near record highs.

In 2011 there are fewer IPOs, but trading volume remains strong. The order-routing agreement signed with Chicago’s CME Group has opened Mexico’s derivatives market to the world. Now, electronic trading infrastructure and investor friendly regulations have set the stage for act two.

Latin America has enjoyed a strong recovery for the most part it has sailed through the recession without lasting damage. Boosted by capital inflows, by record prices for commodity exports, by sound policies and by a heady expansion in domestic credit, the region saw economic growth of 6% last year and is on course to notch close to 5% this year. The region faces slower growth but not disaster. To up the pace, now is the time for reforms to boost productivity.

The main engines for growth in Latin America are China’s demand for minerals, food stuffs and raw materials – this looks set to continue – and consumption as tens of millions edge out of poverty and benefit from newly available credit.

Source: FIX Global Trading, 15.09.2011

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Filed under: BMV - Mexico, FIX Connectivity, Latin America, Market Data, Mexico, News, Risk Management, Trading Technology, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mexico Credit: Banorte beats Brazil´s Itau as acquisition boosts lending

Bonds sold by Grupo Financiero Banorte SAB, Mexico’s fourth-largest bank by outstanding loans, are outperforming debt from financial peers in Latin America after an acquisition helped the company boost lending by 29 percent.

The 6.1 percent rally in Banorte’s dollar bonds due in 2021 this year compares with an advance of 5.7 percent for bank debt in the region, according to data compiled by Bloomberg and Credit Suisse Group AG. Similar-maturity bonds sold by Banco Itau Unibanco SA, Latin America’s biggest bank by market value, gained 6 percent during the same period. Debt due in 2020 issued by Bancolombia SA, Colombia’s biggest bank, rose 5.5 percent.

Banorte, based in Monterrey, Mexico, is tapping into a growing demand for credit in Latin America’s second-biggest economy. Total loans for Banorte expanded 18 percent in the past year, the most since 2008, according to Mexico’s National Banking and Securities Commission. Banorte said on July 25 that its acquisition of Ixe Grupo Financiero SAB helped increase its loan portfolio to 312 billion pesos ($26.4 billion) in the second quarter from 242 billion a year earlier.

“They grew at a healthy pace in the quarter and I’m expecting it to continue,” Natalia Corfield, an ING analyst who recommends investors buy Banorte’s bonds, said in a telephone interview from New York. “The banking sector has a very good growth potential.”

The yield on Banorte’s bonds sank 47 basis points, or 0.47 percentage point, this year to 4.72 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Mexican government dollar notes that mature in 2020 yield 3.45 percent.

Credit Expansion

Pedro Rodriguez, a spokesman for Banorte, didn’t return a phone message seeking comment.

Yields on Sao Paulo-based Itau’s bonds due in 2020 fell 41 basis points during the same period to 5.39 percent. Itau declined to comment through an e-mailed statement.

Mexican banks including Banorte are benefiting from the expansion of credit to a larger share of the population, said Alonso Madero, who helps manage about $5.5 billion in debt at Corp. Actinver SAB. The country’s private credit measured as a percentage of the gross domestic product was 21.8 percent in 2009, compared with 45 percent in Brazil, according to ING.

“Banks could lend a lot more,” Madero said in a telephone interview from Mexico City, “It’s very clear that this is how they could grow. There’s a big potential growth to capitalize on because of the low banking penetration.”

Growth Outlook

Banks in Mexico are increasing lending as the economy may grow “a little bit more” than 4.3 percent this year, Finance Minister Ernesto Cordero said in an event in Mexico City yesterday. Gross domestic product expanded 5.4 percent in 2010, the most in a decade.

Slowing growth in the U.S., the destination for 80 percent of Mexico’s exports, may curb demand for credit in the Latin American country, said Araceli Espinosa, debt analyst at Scotia Capital.

A report yesterday showed that service industries in the U.S. expanded in July at the slowest pace in 17 months as orders and employment cooled, indicating the biggest part of the economy had little spark to begin the second half of the year. Economic figures in the U.S. in last two weeks have shown declining home sales, weaker factory orders, waning consumer confidence and the first decrease in household spending in two years.

“If the economy is not growing, the loan portfolio for the banks is not going to grow,” Espinosa said in a telephone interview from Mexico City.

Yield Spread

Yields on futures contracts for the 28-day TIIE interbank rate due in May were unchanged at 4.99 percent, indicating traders expect the central bank will wait until that month to raise benchmark borrowing costs from a record low 4.5 percent.

The extra yield investors demand to hold Mexican government dollar bonds instead of U.S. Treasuries was unchanged at 128, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co.

The cost to protect Mexican debt against non-payment for five years rose 1 basis point to 112, according to CMA. Credit- default swaps pay the buyer face value in exchange for the underlying securities or cash equivalent if the issuer fails to comply with debt agreements.

The peso advanced 0.2 percent to 11.8193 per dollar, extending its advance this year to 4.4 percent.

Banorte is likely to exercise a call option on its bonds in 2016, ING’s Corfield said. The yield to the 2016 call date on the company’s notes may drop 50 basis points from 6 percent yesterday, she said. A call is a contract that gives the holder the right to buy a security at a set price within a set period. The holder of the call is not obligated to buy the security.

‘Well Positioned’

Banorte has used takeovers, including the 2001 acquisition of Bancrecer SA, to grow into a national financial group from a north-Mexican regional lender since the country’s banking industry collapse in 1995.

Banorte reported a 24 percent increase in second-quarter net income to 2.05 billion pesos. Ixe added 119 million pesos to the profit.

“It’s a benign environment for Mexico now and Banorte is well positioned to benefit from it,” Corfield said.

Source: Bloomberg, 04.08.2011 by  Veronica Navarro Espinosa; Andres R. Martinz

Filed under: Brazil, Latin America, Mexico, News, , , , , , , , , , ,

Brazil – Optimism May Prevail at Last- Monthly Allocation – January 2011

Amid old concerns, the US gives signs of improvement

The New Year will begin in the same way 2010 is ending: full of doubts. However, a more positive mood is emerging in relation to the international economy, at least for the near future. A tendency towards a solid recovery of the US economy particularly reflects this sentiment. Thus, although markets continue to monitor closely the rolling of sovereign and bank debts in Europe, pay particular attention to economic growth in Germany and inflationary trends in China, during January 2011, US economic indicators will probably dominate the spotlight, as analysts seek to confirm signs of a stronger growth.

See detailed report: Brazil – Monthly Allocation – January 2011

The implementation in the US of the fiscal package that maintains tax breaks for personal taxpayers, recently agreed to between the Obama Administration and Congress, supports this optimism. Also, various economic indicators have shown improvement and the overall data pointing to an increase in the speed of recovery is indeed impressive, although in some cases this is slow and in others apparently only transitory. For example, personal consumption has grown consistently in the last few months and growth recorded in October and November indicates that in 4Q10 the increase in the consumption component of GDP may surpass 3% for the first time since 2006. The figures in the indicators of industrial and service activities – ISM Manufacturing and ISM Non-manufacturing – also give grounds for confidence in a faster growth for 2011. Even the labor market has shown some signs of life. Indeed, excluding the surprisingly disappointing payroll data for November, nearly all market indicators have revealed improvements, particularly the drop in weekly jobless insurance claims since the middle of November.

We expect a calm local scenario, with confirmation of the interest rate hikes foreseen for the next months

In Brazil, the minimum wage is set and all signs point to the Central Bank starting a cycle of hikes in the Selic interest rates in January. This should leave the short-term picture clearer. Our basic scenario points to three further hikes of 0.5% in subsequent COPOM meetings, a total rise of 2.0%, maintained until mid-2012.

Additionally, the installation of a new administration always brings hopes of further structural advances. However, several uncertainties cloud the medium-term horizon, such as, for example, questions on how the new Government will conduct its fiscal policy.

We believe that, despite the positive signs expected locally and in the US, a seasonally weak stock market in January will not allow the Ibovespa to recover consistently. Instead, it is likely to continue volatile, but moving sideways. Faced with this, we have not changed our portfolio in terms of the names included. We have only re-balanced weights by reducing the weights for Vale and PDG Realty (from 20 to 15% and from 10 to 5%, respectively) and increasing the weights for Telesp and MRV (both from 5 to 10%).

Source: BANIF – IXE, 03.01.2011

Filed under: BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil, Exchanges, Latin America, News, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mexico: Economy Continues Slowly to Our Targets – November 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Mexican growth motors continue to balance out

Since last month, we have experienced a re-balancing of growth drivers, with improvement of local demand and a slow-down in exports, the main growth motor. Exports have reduced their YoY growth rate from the nearly 50% of the beginning of the year, although it remained at a high 21% in September. We expect this deceleration to continue until 2011.

Mexico – Monthly Allocation – November 2010

During October, we renewed our good expectations for growth of the Mexican economy with the release of statistics for September: a) Internal retail sales increased 4% YoY; b) consumer confidence grew 12% YoY; c) 780k new jobs created in the first nine months. Concerning job creation, this level was a record high for the same period and mainly due to the export industry. We maintain our expectation for the creation of 650k new jobs in 2010 (seasonally, there is job reduction at year-end) and 530k in 2011.

Despite these changes in export and local demand, we maintain our expectation of a 4.4% GDP growth for 2010 (while market consensus remain at 5%) and 3.7% for 2011. For our 2011 forecast, local demand still has to catch up, as we predict a further decline in exports.

For our November portfolio, we have added Femsa and increased the weight of Grupo Mexico from 15 to 20%. We have reduced the weight of Mexchem from 15 to 10% and withdrawn Soriana.

Mexican tidbits

Inflation remains under control, although the first data collected for October, indicating a 0.5% increase, was slightly above our and market expectations. We continue expecting 4.5% for 2010, with the belief that interest rates increase no earlier than October 2011, although the growth of inflation in the recent past may allow postponement to the beginning of 2012.

The Mexican Peso reduced its volatility in October, appreciating from the 12.6 P$/US$ at the beginning of the month. Our forecast is currently at 12.4 for the end of 2010 and 12.2 for the end of 2011.

Source: Banif – IXE, 05.11.2010

Filed under: BMV - Mexico, Latin America, Mexico, News, Services, , , , , , , , ,

Brazil: Full and Inconclusive Agenda – November 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Invisible hand might move the US market

For November, we expect no relevant data coming from the economic indicators in Europe or in the US. One of the main drivers of the month, however, should come from the FED in its meeting on the 2nd and 3rd. We expect immediate action announced in the form of purchases of securities in the financial market, irrigating it by around US$500bn in six months. Last month, deflation was the biggest fear but since then, rumors of FED actions have turned these fears into expectation of inflation. The first practical signs of this change happened at the end of October, when the Treasury sold US$10bn of 5-yr Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS) with negative yield, indicating that investors are already betting on increasing inflation. The full effects of a government-induced inflation are uncertain, but we believe that the initial sentiment on such an announcement would be positive.

Mixed drivers for Brazil

We believe investors will closely monitor six main factors in November that should affect the local market: 1) The performance of foreign markets; 2) the end of the bad feeling on Petrobras’ capital increase; 3) the end of the elections; 4) companies 3Q earnings; 5) the stability of Brazil’s FX and 6) the domestic economy. The first three items are likely to be positive. Items 4 and 5 can be mixed and bring volatility and item 6 is likely to be seen negatively. Given these mixed drivers, we foresee the same scenario we projected for October: the market moving sideways with volatility.

We have heavily changed our suggested portfolio again, as we did last month, with the inclusion of Petrobras and Lojas Renner (with weights of 20% and 5%, respectively). We have reduced weights on Guararapes, Telesp and Tractebel (both from 10% to 5%) and have withdrawn Itaú and OGX.

Brazilian Economic Indicators Published in November Weaker

We see the end of elections as positive, as it will leave a great source of stress behind and, independent to the outcome, differences between the two candidates are likely to have practical effects only in the medium term. The most immediate potential stress that can arise after the elections result is likely the announcement of names in the top positions of the new government.

The appreciation of the Real since the Petrobras capital increase stressed the government and other economic agents until the government decided to increase IOF taxation sequentially, first from 2% to 4% and then to 6%. First indications show stability of the FX, but the government will certainly monitor to see if these measures were sufficient to reach long lasting stability. We foresee further action from the Government should the Real start to appreciate again.

In economic terms, we believe that Brazil’s November indicators, published in November, should be weaker than those published for a long stretch of months. The reason for this view is our expectation for three indicators: 1) retail sales; 2) industrial production and 3) activity index (Central Bank measure that indicates GDP performance and precedes its release). We foresee negative figures for the first two and nearly zero for the third.

Source: Banif-IXE, 01.11.2010

Filed under: BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil, Exchanges, Latin America, News, Services, , , , , , , , ,

Mexico: Economy Steady in Low Gear – October 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Motors of Mexican growth start balancing out

As we mentioned last month, the Mexican economy has slowed down. Our forecasts for GDP growth remain unchanged at 4.4% and 3.7% for 2010 and 2011, respectively, in line with Government expectations (of 4.5% and 3.8%). We believe that the economy will not slow down further and that export and local demand will become more equitable. While the slower growth of the US economy reduces the prospects for exports, local demand has started to improve, as seen by the 2Q10 YoY internal consumption growth of 4.8%.

Locally, the Mexican construction segment continues the weakest in the industrial sector, with manufacturing leading the economy. As local demand picks up, we foresee a change in consumption from non-durable to durable goods.

Mexico – Monthly Allocation – October 2010

A political discussion on the budget for 2011 will start in Congress in November. We believe that this is likely to bring volatility to the market, as it should affect the Mexican currency and local bonds. Prudent fiscal policies are likely to continue and we expect the government to propose a cut in fiscal deficit. We also believe that this proposal is already expected and, at least partially, priced in.

Mexican tidbits

Inflation is apparently under control, after positive signs that led the government to admit that its 5.25% target for the year is high and that it should converge to market consensus’ 4.5% (our forecast continues at 4.7%).

After the volatility of the Mexican Peso in August, we believe that the rally is likely to cease and our new expectations for the FX are of 12.4 (from 12) and 12.3 pesos per US dollar by the end of 2010 and 2011, respectively. We base this expectation on the belief that cyclical inflows other than exports, such as remittances (linked to US employment), tourism (linked to US consumer confidence) and foreign direct investments (linked to US private profits) are likely to remain weak.

For October, we have reduced the total number of names in our portfolio from 11 to 8. We have added Soriana and increased the weights of LABB (from 5 to 10%) and Mexchem (from 5 to 15%). We also have withdrawn Chedraui, Femsa and Televisa.

Source: Banif-IXE, 04.10.2010

Filed under: BMV - Mexico, Exchanges, FIX Connectivity, Latin America, Mexico, News, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Mexico:Banorte cagy on rumors of IXE acquisition

In a release to the Mexican stock exchange (BMV), Grupo Financiero Banorte was noncommittal on a rumor published by a prominent business columnist that the bank was in talks to acquire IXE Grupo Financiero.

The release said Banorte is “analyzing different strategic alternatives to continue consolidating its leadership position as one of the most important institutions in the Mexican financial system.”

IXE released a similarly vague statement through the BMV, saying it was “exploring options to increase its competitive capacity in the Mexican financial market.”


The acquisition rumor that sparked a more than 2% jump in IXE’s stock price on Friday (Oct 1) started with Alberto Aguilar, a financial columnist with daily newspaper El Universal, who published an article that afternoon saying that Banorte “is in very advanced talks to acquire IXE.”

Aguilar’s un-sourced columns have frequently been accurate this year as the rumors have swirled over a possible acquisition of non-bank mortgage lender Hipotecaria Su Casita.

Curiously, this is the second time in recent days that Banorte and IXE have appeared in the same headlines in Mexican papers. Earlier, both banks said they would like to be involved as investors in the restructuring of troubled Mexican airline Mexicana: Banorte by possibly converting a loan to the company into an equity stake and IXE by rounding up a group of investors to purchase the company.

Banorte general manager Alejandro Valenzuela had told the Mexican media that he was “very happy” that IXE was interested in getting involved in the Mexicana restructuring.


IXE Grupo Financiero has not been very profitable as of late and has had some trouble picking up the pace following the financial crisis of 2009.

The financial group – which includes an insurer and a securities broker, as well as the 11th largest bank in the Mexican market – earned 28mn pesos (US$2.2mn) in the first half, down 83% from its 1H09 earnings.

As a consequence, the group had a 12-month ROE of 0.89%, the lowest of the 25 financial groups tracked by Mexican banking and securities commission CNBV and far below the industry average of 14.9%.

The group also had to close an ill-timed middle-class consumer banking venture called Banco Deuno that it launched in 2008, rolling it up into its flagship bank in August.

Should Banorte complete a full acquisition of Grupo Financiero IXE, the financial group would overtake Santander Mexico to become the third largest financial group in the Mexican market by assets, behind Banamex and BBVA Bancomer.

Grupo Financiero Banorte is the only top-five financial group in Mexico that is controlled by Mexican capital.

Source: Business News America, 02.10.2010

Filed under: Banking, BMV - Mexico, Latin America, Mexico, Risk Management, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Brazil: Clouds still surround the US economy – October 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Fear now is of deflation in the US

The US economy has shown signs of weakness since the beginning of 2H10 and now indications of a possible deflation have surfaced. This new fear is like a two edged sword. On one hand, the imminent risk of deflation is a deterioration from previous conditions but on the other, it might force the Central Bank to accelerate its actions to stimulate the economy. In our opinion, the market would see faster action as positive in the short term. In this respect, it is worth mentioning that the first set of economic indicators released in October displayed neutral results.

In the absence of strong market drivers worldwide in October, and with a weak local agenda (the most important factor is the Presidential elections), we believe the trend is likely to be neutral for the month, although with volatility. We foresaw the same scenario for September, but the 6.6% appreciation of the Ibovespa, caused by the easing of economic concerns, surprised us.

In Europe, we have clouds in Ireland after the Irish Central Bank announced that Allied Irish Bank would need around €30bn of extra capital by year-end. However, in our view, if problems in the region remain contained to Greece and Ireland, Europe should not be a concern and ought to continue its slow recovery. In Asia, we expect neutral events, with no problems arising in China.

Brazil – Monthly Allocation – October 2010

In October, with no major operation scheduled, we believe the market will follow the economic and political news more closely. This month, we have made substantial changes in our portfolio, substituting companies having 35% of our previous total weight. The new names are PDG Realty (with a 10% weight), OGX, CSN and Itaú (with 5% each). We have also increased the weights of Telesp (from 5 to 10%) and Vale (from 15 to 20%).

Outlook for Brazil continues Bright

In Brazil, we expect the current strong economic demand to continue and believe in the likelihood of an upward revision for 2011 GDP growth forecasts, currently at 4.5% (Focus poll). For 2010, growth is relatively undisputed to be in the 7.5-8% range.

In our opinion, the political dispute in the presidential campaign can bring about one of three scenarios to affect the stock market: 1) Labor’s party, Dilma, wins in the first round; 2) a second round takes place, with a continuation of Dilma’s current advantage or 3) Dilma loses ground in a possible second round. We believe that the first and second scenarios are likely to have no effect on the market, as we have seen no response to Dilma’s advantage so far. If the third scenario takes place, it is likely to bring more volatility to the market. Investors may view this as positive but, as they note that the difference between the two candidates is in the details instead of being radical, the event should have limited positive impact. In overall terms, we think a second round would be beneficial, as it would force a greater balance between the country’s political forces.

Source: IXE-BANIF, 01.10.2010

Filed under: BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil, Exchanges, News, , , , , , , , , , ,

Mexico: Drifting Toward Troubled Waters – September 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Slow US economy decreases Mexican expectations

The structure of the Mexican economy is unchanged when it comes to the breakdown between local and export markets, and we base our expectation for Mexican economic growth on both markets. We continue to expect a 4.4% GDP growth for 2010 (growths of 4.3%, 7.6%, 4.0% and 1.9% for each quarter, sequentially) while other, more aggressive houses, have reduced this from 5% to nearly 4%.

Despite the most recent reduction in 2H10 growth expectations, we maintain our figure in the belief that the local market will compensate for a likely weaker export scenario that heavily depends on the US economy.

We have assumed since last month that the US would grow at a lower than previously expected pace. Locally, the Mexican construction segment has been the weakest in the industrial sector, while manufacturing has led the economy. We expect export companies, which have been suffering from the weaker foreign market, to recover by year-end, although car exports have performed well even during these tougher times.

Mexican tidbits

Mexico’s inflation has been increasing and, from the current annualized 3.7%, we maintain our expectation of it reaching 4.7% by year-end. We believe that our expectation of interest rate hikes in 3Q11 might become market consensus soon.

The FX has moved negatively lately, after three months without definite direction. It has surpassed the P$13/US$ line, the worst level since the end of June. We still expect it to be at P$12 by year end but, if we do not see a downward movement over the next weeks, we might change this expectation to a P$12.25-12.35 range. We do not believe this potential change in the FX scenario would cause any change to Mexican exports, with the main driver here continuing to be the strength of the US economy (and demand).

For August, we have added Alsea and Femsa to our portfolio and increased the weights of America Movil (from 20% to 25%) and Walmex (from 10% to 15%). We also reduced the weights of GenomaLab and Geo (from 10% to 5%), and have withdrawn Cemex.

Read the full market analysis Mexico – Monthly Allocation – September 2010

Source: IXE-Banif, 01.09.2010

Filed under: BMV - Mexico, Latin America, Mexico, News, Risk Management, , , , , , , ,

Brazil: US economy still in the spotlight – September 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Little hope for a short-term change in the economy

For September, we foresee that attention will continue focused on the US economy, which has been showing signs of weakness since the beginning of 2H10. This expectation is the same we had for August, which proved to be correct. The main event we highlight for September is the FOMC meeting on the 21st, which might raise market expectations of new measures to improve economic growth. The latest statement on the economy from the President of the Central Bank mentioned that the Bank is ready, if necessary, to intervene to adjust the economic trend. However, its portfolio of potential measures is, in our view, limited due to the current low level of interest rates. Meanwhile, data released on housing, payroll and investment are likely to drive the market in the ST.

Concerning the rest of the world, we believe that Europe will continue out of the spotlight, with Germany leading the local economy well. We believe that the only negative in the month could come from China, which has been releasing some mixed and inconclusive data lately.

In September, with little change in the scenario and no major event in sight, we expect the market to move sideways and with less volatility. Therefore, we decided to maintain our defensive view and keep the core of our previous portfolio. We have added Tietê, MRV and EZ Tec, increased the weight of Petrobras (from 15 to 20%) and reduced the weight of Eletropaulo (from 10 to 5%). We have withdrawn B2W (weak 2Q results without good ST expectations), CSN (due to its deteriorated ST outlook) and Tegma (stellar performance in the month).

Petrobras is the month’s highlight

Last month, we predicted that the start of the political TV campaign in August, at presidential level, would be exciting and move the markets. The reality proved to be very dull, with the Labor Party’s candidate having the unquestionable advantage and no response at all from any of the main financial markets: equity, interest rate and FX. In September, we believe that Petrobras’ capital increase operation will be the highlight. The weak performance of the company’s shares in the past 1.5 years contributed to holding down the Ibovespa. We believe that, after the capital increase, they can have the opposite effect.

When it comes to economic data, we believe the two most important events of the month will take place in the first week. These are the Copom meeting on the 1st and the 2Q GDP report on the 3rd. We expect an unchanged Selic rate of 10.75% for the former and a 1% change for the later (QoQ seasonally adjusted, or around 8% YoY).

Read full analysis Brazil – Monthly Allocation – September 2010

Source: IXE-BANIF, 01.09.2010

Filed under: BM&FBOVESPA, Brazil, Latin America, News, , , , , , , , , , ,

BMV Mexican Stock Exchange Rebalancing of IPC and adustment of MSCI Country Index

The BMV Mexican Stock Exchange – IPC index will be rebalancing go into effect as of today’s ( Tuesday 31.08.2010) close.

The IPC names that will be added to the index are: ICHB, CHDRAUIB, LABB and ARCA. The names that will leave the index are: GFAMSA,AUTLAN and ASUR.

MSCI country Index will also rebalance and go into effect as of today’s ( Tuesday 31.08.2010) close.

Mexico is expected to be the market with the largest recipient of inflows. Among the names that will have the largest positive impact are: AMX and WALMEX, while ALFA is expected to have the largest negative impact (albeit marginal).

Source: IXE 31.08.2010

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Brazil Macro August 2010

According to the IPCA-15 index, inflation was -0.05%. The inflation deceleration process, which was initially characterized by a positive shock of food prices and the seasonal favorable behavior of clothing prices, has gradually become broader and longer than originally thought. The inflation outlook points to IPCA reacceleration down the road, but low current inflation is postponing this scenario. In all, the Selic rate is likely to be maintained stable in the next COPOM meeting.

According to the IPCA-15 index, inflation was -0.05% in the 30 days ended in August,13th. Since the end of June, retail inflation, measured by the IPCA and the IPCA-15 indexes, has remained at a very low level, close to zero, and chances are that this will not change in the short term.

The diffusion index rose slightly to 52.9, from  48.7 in the end of July, showing that a larger percentage of items from the inflation basket has faced price increase. However, diffusion´s moving average is declining (see chart on the right), suggesting that inflation is likely to keep decelerating. Also, there is indeed a growing number of groups of goods or services posting deflation or declining inflation. For instance, according to August´s IPCA-15, food at home, furniture, home appliance, electronics, clothing, footwear, textiles, pharmaceuticals and communications posted deflation. Eating out of home, fuel and energy for housing, health services, personal care and recreation are posting significant lowering inflation.

In sum, the inflation deceleration process, which was initially characterized by a positive shock of food prices and the seasonal favorable behavior of clothing prices, has gradually become broader and longer than originally thought. As a result, 12-month core IPCA and services inflation have begun to drop, which is surprising because the level of capacity utilization is close to a record high, unemployment is at a record low, the aggregate wage bill is rising and there are signs of supply shortage in some sectors.

The inflation outlook points to IPCA reacceleration down the road, because of the underlying economic conditions, the fact that wholesale prices have increased, and the high probability that wage negotiations, scheduled for the following months, will lead to real wage increases above productivity gains. Nevertheless, low current inflation is postponing the IPCA reacceleration scenario and, to be fair, weakening it too, as it helps align inflation expectations with the inflation target. In all, August´s IPCA is likely to be around 0.1% and the monetary policy committee – Copom – seems poised to maintain the Selic rate stable in the next meeting, scheduled for September,1st.

Source: Banif – IXE, 20.08.2010 Mauro Schneider

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Brazil: Market now with eyes on US growth – August 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Spotlight moves from the euro zone to the USA

In August, we foresee the financial markets moving their attention from the euro zone to the USA. We also expect China not to have much influence on market performance this month. The results of the bank stress test released in July seem to have calmed the market and caused fears of bankruptcy to fade. The data did not indicate that problems are over, but left the feeling that they are under control with the adjustments made so far. On the other hand, the hopes that the US economy would gain momentum have diminished after the FED’s Presidential speech at the end of July. Given this, we believe that published economic data are likely to drive the market, as they will give a better idea of trends. However, as we do not foresee any data released this month as important enough to change expectations, we believe the market is likely to move sideways.

Brazil – Monthly Allocation – August 2010

Last month, we foresaw a volatile market with no trend for July and based on this belief, compiled our portfolio with a defensive view. Despite this estimate, the market did rally and our portfolio followed the trend, demonstrating that it was able to perform well in upward as well as volatile movements. For this reason, we decided that, as we do not identify any definite catalyst driving the market in August, we would change our portfolio very little and continue our defensive view. We have reduced the weights on Bradesco and Hering (from 10% to 5% each) due to their recent stellar performance. We have also substituted Tietê for Eletropaulo, with the same weight, and added Telesp.

Focus on slowdown of US economy

The latest indications of a slowdown in the US economy point to a 2.5% GDP growth for 2010, from a previous 2.7%. This reduction, although immaterial, cooled down previous expectations of upward revisions in estimates and turned attention to stimulating growth. On August 10, attention should focus on the FOMC meeting to see if a change in the monetary policy is possible. However, with interest rates already close to zero, there is probably little to be done on this front. Monitoring the labor market (unemployment and payroll) is perhaps the best hope for investors to find economic improvement.

The real start of the Brazilian Presidential race

On August 17, presidential candidates will start their TV campaigns. Although candidates have been campaigning on the road for a while, many people see TV campaigns as the most important and decisive part of the presidential race, so voting polls that start after this are closely followed and should affect the market. Another potential source for market stress is the end of the low inflation period (last two months, caused by food prices) that we foresee for August. Although we expect inflation to remain at around 0.4% per month until December, people may view any rebound negatively.

Source: BANIF – IXE, 02.08.2010

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Mexico: Fears of Economic Slowdown Unfounded – July 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

The big picture remains unchanged in Mexico, with a high dependency on exports to the US, and a slow recovery of the local economy. Given this, growth still depends on exports, with the local economy playing a secondary role. Recent economic data released for the US economy frustrated expectations of a slightly better performance. However, the data was not bad enough to change the medium term outlook, or reverse the positive trend. Therefore, we believe that the Mexican economy continues to tend towards a recovery, as the main problems facing the world remain in Europe, a region that has very little impact on the country. In any case, a potential economic slowdown in the US continues as the main risk to our moderate optimism.  Mexico – Monthly Allocation – July 2010

For July, we have added Mexchem, Urbi, Autlan and Asur to our suggested portfolio, reduced the weight of Cemex (from 10 to 5%) and withdrawn Gap and Geo.

We continue to expect a GDP growth of 4.4% for 2010, despite the expected release of a 5.5% figure for 2Q10. The reason for this is that we expect a deceleration due to a higher comparison base, which is likely to reduce 3Q and 4Q growth to 4.5% and 3.8%, respectively. This does not conflict with our expectation of a slow recovery of the local market during 2H10, as the slower growth will occur due to the stronger base.

Mexico has also been building its international reserves, which now stand at US$100 bn. We believe that, if oil prices remain stable, these reserves may reach US$140bn by YE. These large reserves are another positive feature of the local economy, as they give liquidity to the country at a time when other regions, such as Europe, are suffering from a tight credit situation.

Source: IXE, Banif, 02.07.2010

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Brazil: Scenario Unchanged – July 2010- IXE BANIF – Monthly Analysis

Focus still on the euro zone

For July, we believe the focus will continue to remain mainly on Europe. Banks in the region, particularly in most of the more fragile PIIGS group (Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece and Spain), apart from Italy, have recently had limited access to financial markets and remain dependant on local Central Banks to access cash. This situation on its own is uncomfortable, remaining as a source of tension to a market that remains volatile. We expect volatility to continue in July and still do not see any indication of a trend. This is exactly the same view we had for June and, consequently, our suggested portfolio has changed little. We have withdrawn Drogasil, one of the largest winners; reduced the weight of CSN (from 10 to 5%); increased the weight on Hering (from 5 to 10%) and included B2W. With these alterations, we continue using the Ibovespa weights for the oil, mining, banking and transportation industries, remaining overweight for the retail and utility sectors. Brazil – Monthly Allocation – July 2010

Outlook for the euro zone: uncertain and unequal

The G-20 meetings resulted in the decision to halve deficits by 2013 and start decreasing debts from 2016. However, each country is free to decide on the balance between cuts and economic incentives. In Europe, we are facing a catch 22 situation: everyone agrees on the need for cuts, but most people do not want to implement them for fear of an economic slowdown, as perceptions are that growth is more essential. We believe that if only the feared slowdown occurs in Europe it would have little impact on local economic growth, as exports rather than local demand drive economic growth.

Silver linings to the dark clouds

For the rest of the world, we highlight the USA, China and Brazil. Although recently released economic data in the US came slightly below expectations, it is not indicative of a reversal of the trend towards a slow recovery. A conclusion of the details for the reform in the financial system may take place in July, leaving room for welcomed practical measures. In China, we expect growth to continue unchanged, balancing the still difficult situation of the developed world. In Brazil, we expect inflation data for June to be as low as that of May. We also see a transition time for GDP estimates, with a continued gathering of data to support either a revision or confirmation of the current 2H10 and 2011 expectations, which are currently good.

Source: IXE BANIF, 02.07.2010

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