Most emerging-market stocks rose, led by health-care and consumer shares, as India’s benchmark measure surged to the highest level in more than two years.
Mortgage company Housing Development Finance Corp. rallied to a record, while a gauge of Indian lenders rose to the highest level since 2010 on speculation the central bank will cut banks’ reserve requirements. The Shanghai Composite Index climbed for the first time in three days, while Rossi Residencial SA led a gain in Brazil’s Ibovespa. Russian shares dropped the most in four weeks as OAO Rosneft slumped.
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index was little changed at 1,046.10, as 488 stocks rose while 284 declined. Reserve Bank of India Governor Duvvuri Subbarao said yesterday he would “take note” of softening inflation at next month’s monetary policy review after April data showed wholesale prices grew at the slowest pace since November 2009.
“India is performing well because of expectations of more rate cuts following this week’s good inflation numbers,” Maarten-Jan Bakkum, an emerging-market strategist at ING Investment Management in the Hague, said by e-mail. “Russia is the outlier. The market has been a dog for a while.”
A gauge of health-care stocks in the MSCI Emerging Markets Index gained 1.1 percent, while commodity producers fell. The broad measure has slipped 0.9 percent this year, compared with a 13 percent advance in the MSCI World Index.
The iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index exchange-traded fund gained less than 0.1 percent to $43.39. The Chicago Board Options Exchange Emerging Markets ETF Volatility Index, a measure of options prices on the fund and expectations of price swings, rose 0.5 percent to 19.41.
Brazil’s Ibovespa rose 0.5 percent as consumer stocks gained after retail sales increased more than analysts forecast in March. Homebuilder Rossi jumped 10 percent after posting first-quarter sales that exceeded analysts’ estimates.
The Mexican IPC index was little changed. TV Azteca SAB, Mexico’s second-largest broadcaster, fell to the lowest price since October 2011. A law to boost competition in telecommunications and media gained approval from a majority of state legislatures, officials said yesterday.
Russia’s Micex slid to its lowest close since May 2. OAO Rosneft, the nation’s largest crude producer, fell for the first time in five days. OAO Surgutneftegas, which traded without the right to receive a dividend today, lost 10 percent.
The ruble weakened against the dollar after Bank Rossii kept the nation’s refinancing rate on hold at 8.25 percent for an eighth month, as predicted by 18 of 24 economists in a Bloomberg News survey.
India’s S&P BSE Sensex jumped 2.5 percent to the highest level since Jan. 5, 2011. State Bank of India, the nation’s largest lender, added 3.9 percent, the biggest advance since September. HDFC jumped 4.5 percent to a record.
The Philippine Stock Exchange Index climbed 1.1 percent and Thailand’s SET Index added 0.4 percent to its highest close since January 1994. The Hang Seng China Enterprises Index of mainland companies listed in Hong Kong rose 0.5 percent.
GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Ltd., the world’s largest producer of polysilicon, soared 10 percent, the biggest advance in the emerging markets gauge, after China Securities Journal said the nation may announce solar power subsidy policies soon.
The extra yield investors demand to own emerging-market debt over U.S. Treasuries rose three basis points, or 0.03 percentage point, to 268 basis points, according to JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s EMBI Global Diversified Index.