Brazilian Stock Exchange Breaks Record with US$ 600 Billion Turnover

Last year, Ibovespa, the main index of the São Paulo Stock Exchange (Bovespa), in southeastern Brazil, rose 32.9% and recorded its highest level ever. The year's first record high was 34,540 points, on January 3, and the last one was 44,526 points, on December 27.

Bovespa also recorded its highest business volume in a single day, at US$ 11.1 billion, and listed 26 new companies. The stock exchange had a turnover of US$ 598.9 billion in 2006, 49.3% more than in 2005.

As of December last year, the market value of the 350 companies listed in the São Paulo Stock exchange was 1.54 trillion reais (US$ 720.5 billion). According to data published by the stock exchange press office, there was a 36.9% increase from last year.

A large share of this capital – 21.6% – came from financial institutions. The second largest capital owner at the stock exchange is the petroleum, gas and fuels sector, followed by the telecommunications, mining and electricity sectors.

Foreign investors had an important participation in Bovespa in 2006. They answered to 35.5% of the total volume traded at the stock exchange, more than the 32.8% recorded in 2005.

The flow of foreign investment had a US$ 1 billion positive balance in December, resulting from US$ 20.9 billion worth of purchases, and US$ 19.8 billion worth of sales. In December, foreigners were responsible for 34.1% of Bovespa's transactions, according to data published by the stock exchange itself.

Last year, the São Paulo Stock Exchange had an average daily turnover of 2.4 billion reais (US$ 1.1 billion), 51.1% more than recorded in 2005. The number of business transactions at the stock exchange also increased, from 15.5 million to 21.5 million.

The ten most traded stocks were those of companies Petrobras, Vale do Rio Doce, Bradesco, Usiminas, Telemar, Itaú, Siderúrgica Nacional and Cemig. Petrobras and Vale do Rio Doce had two types of papers each among the most traded ones.

Newly listed companies at Bovespa last year include Brasil Ecodiesel, which produces and sells bio-fuels and vegetable oils, Odontoprev, which operates dental plans, Positivo, a technology company, São Carlos e Lopes, in the real estate sector, and Dufry DSA, in the tourism business.

Of the 26 newly listed companies at the stock exchange, 20 were listed on New Market, a system that requires a higher level of transparency from companies to investors.

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