Argentine Stocks Rise in Tandem With U.S. Market; Peso Unchanged
06/19/2012| 06:21pm US/Eastern
--Stocks up on U.S. housing data, expectations Fed will offer stimulus
--Unchanged at ARS4.5005
--Tenaris again most traded stock
By Taos Turner
BUENOS AIRES--Argentine stocks jumped Tuesday, rising in tandem with the U.S. market as upbeat housing data and expectations that the Federal Reserve might offer more stimulus boosted investor sentiment.
The Merval index rose 3.6% to 2351.53 in volume totaling ARS62 million ($13.7 million.)
The steel tube producer Tenaris SA (TS.BA, TEN.MI), which again easily was the most-traded local stock, rose 6% to ARS115.
Investors often use the stock to get U.S. dollars outside of Argentina. They buy Tenaris in Argentina and sell it overseas, paying a hefty premium to do so because it gives them access to U.S. dollars, which are often impossible to buy in Argentina because of forex controls.
Grupo Financiero Galicia SA (GGAL.BA, GGAL) rose 4.5% to ARS3.03; YPF SA (YPF, YPFD.BA), Argentina's biggest oil and gas company, rose 4% to ARS78.50; Banco Frances (FRAN.BA) rose almost 4% to ARS7.55.
The Global X FTSE Argentina 20 ETF rose 2.6% to $7.92.
"Taking advantage of the push from abroad, and amid expectations the Fed will reveal its cards again, local stocks rose broadly," the brokerage Estudio Ber said in its daily commentary.
Bonds also did well.
One of the most traded bonds, the dollar-denominated RO15, rose 1.1% to ARS505.90. The most heavily-traded debt was the TVPP GDP Warrant in pesos. It rose 1.5% to ARS11.25.
The peso closed at ARS4.5005 to the U.S. dollar on the MAE foreign exchange wholesale market, unchanged from the previous session.
The central bank regularly intervenes in the foreign-exchange market, buying dollars to build its international reserves and keeping the peso on a slow path of depreciation against the U.S. currency to help exporters.
Last year the peso weakened 7.6% against the dollar.
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