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Peru Stocks Rise as Humala Lead Falls Against Fujimori in Poll

April 29 (Bloomberg) -- Peru stocks and bonds jumped after a national poll showed ex-military rebel Ollanta Humala’s presidential election lead fell to the narrowest since he won a first-round vote.

The Lima General Index of 36 stocks climbed 3.3 percent to 19,603.43 at 2:18 p.m. New York time, for a 4.3 percent gain this week. The index pared its loss this year to 16 percent. The yield on the nation’s benchmark August 2020 bond fell 10 basis points, or 0.1 percentage point, to 7.15 percent, according to Deutschebank.

Humala’s support among voters in a poll published today narrowed to 1.2 percentage points over Congresswoman Keiko Fujimori, down from 3.8 percentage points in a survey issued yesterday. The Lima stock index has dropped 7.8 percent since Humala’s first-round victory on April 10. The presidential runoff is June 5.

“The market can’t stand Humala, so this poll was good news,” said Gustavo Urrutia, chief economist at Inteligo SAB, a Lima-based brokerage. “Keiko Fujimori is also bringing respected economists onboard her team.”

Humala had 41.5 percent support and Fujimori had 40.3 percent in Lima-based Datum International’s survey published today in newspaper Peru.21. The poll of 1,200 people from April 25-27 had a margin of error of 2.8 percentage points. The gap is the narrowest of the three polls published since Humala, leader of Peru’s Nationalist Party, won the April 10 first-round vote.

Poll Results

The index rose the most in almost two years yesterday and sol bonds surged after researcher CPI issued a poll that showed Humala with a 3.8 percentage point lead over Fujimori, narrower than his six-point advantage in a separate April 16-21 poll. Datum said 18 percent of those surveyed were either undecided or would cast a blank vote.

A former army officer and one-time ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Humala has pledged to raise mining taxes and renegotiate free-trade agreements. Fujimori says she will maintain existing economic policies and backs industry privatization.

Copper exploration company Alturas Minerals Corp. jumped 13 percent, leading today’s gains. Thirty stocks in the Lima General index rose, while one fell and five were little changed. Alturas is up 31 percent this week, the biggest gain in the benchmark gauge since April 22.

The extra yield investors demand to own Peruvian government bonds instead of U.S. Treasuries fell 11 basis points, or 0.11 percentage point, to 214, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co.

“Voters appear to have broken towards Fujimori in this latest poll and we believe investors will react positively to this,” Cesar Perez-Novoa, managing director of Santiago-based brokerage Celfin Capital, wrote today in a note to clients. “Her proposals have the potential for appeal to people across a range of various socio-economic groups, and also the undecided.”

To contact the reporters on this story: Alex Emery in Lima at aemery1@bloomberg.net; John Quigley in Lima at jquigley8@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at papadopoulos@bloomberg.net

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