Brazil Market Goes Flat While Waiting US Rate Hike

Brazilian equities finished slightly higher, with buying limited ahead of an expected U.S. interest rate hike tomorrow. Brazilian stocks were basically unchanged, tracking limited movement in U.S. shares. Brazil’s benchmark Bovespa Index inched up 3.98 points, or 0.02%.

Brazilian shares ended essentially flat, as investors await a likely U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate hike tomorrow.


Amid earnings news, Banco Itaú stated that its net profit surged to 920 million reais in the third quarter from 807 million reais one year ago.


Brazil’s No. 2 private bank – behind Bradesco – attributed the result to increased lending fueled by an economic recovery, in spite of absorbing a one-off charge from a deal with a retailer.


Also, steelmaker CSN announced that its third-quarter net profit more than tripled to 694 million reais, up from 203 million reais one year before, based on higher steel prices.


The company also lauded a more profitable mix of products and gains from its logistics business for the increase.


Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization leapt to 1.36 billion reais in the period from 747.5 million reais last year, as net revenue surged 56% to 2.8 billion reais.


Discount Brazilian airline Gol saw its third-quarter net income climb 28% to 86.4 million reais from the corresponding period in 2003 on advancing revenues and market share.


Quarterly revenue gained almost 27% to 523 million reais from a year prior. Gol also reiterated its 2004 guidance for revenues of about 1.9 billion reais.


Still, Telesp Celular issues fell, after the firm set a price of 5 reais per 1,000 shares for a pending secondary share offering.


The telecommunications firm said the price represents a discount of approximately 30% from the issue’s average price in the last 30 trading sessions.


On the local economic front, the IGP-DI index showed prices rose 0.53% in October, basically meeting estimates.


Many traders anticipate that Brazil’s central bank will boost its benchmark Selic rate by half a percentage point later this month.


PRNewswire
Thomson Financial Corporate Group
www.thomsonfinancial.com

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