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Argentine Stocks: Grupo Galicia, Petrobras Argentina and YPF

The following companies had unusual price changes in Argentine trading. Stock symbols are in parentheses, and share prices are as of the close in Buenos Aires. The Merval index gained 3.8 percent to 2,273.02, its biggest increase in more than five weeks.

Grupo Financiero Galicia SA (GGAL AF) rose 4.2 percent to 2.95 pesos. Argentina’s largest consumer lender gained in line with global stocks as investors are “optimistic that groups that favor austerity measures will win elections in Greece this weekend,” Mariano Tavelli, president of Buenos Aires-brokerage Tavelli & Cia., said in a phone interview.

YPF SA (YPFD AF) jumped 9.1 percent to 74.50 pesos, and earlier gained as much as 20 percent, the most since March 2009. Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim announced yesterday he now owns 8.4 percent of Argentina’s largest oil company.

Petrobras Argentina SA (PESA AF) advanced 11 percent to 5.34 pesos, the biggest increase in almost four years. The unit of Brazil’s state-controlled oil company, Petroleo Brasileiro SA, rallied as investors bought on “cheap” valuations and as the announcement of Carlos Slim’s stake in YPF was seen as a positive sign for the Argentine oil sector, Ruben Pascuali, a trader and analyst at Buenos Aires-based brokerage Mayoral Bursatil, said by phone today.

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