BM&FBovespa Rallies After Sale of CME Group Stake to Raise Cash

BM&FBovespa SA, Latin America’s biggest securities exchange, rose the most in six months after selling 20 percent of the stake it held in CME Group Inc. to raise cash.

The exchange will make about 450 million reais ($119 million) from the sale, according to a regulatory filing. The Brazilian company, which still owns a 4 percent stake in CME, said it had no plans to further reduce its holdings in the Chicago-based owner of the world’s largest futures market.

The cash infusion will bolster BM&FBovespa’s finances after sales trailed analysts estimates in six of the past eight quarters amid a dropoff in trading volume and an economic slump in Brazil. The real’s 40 percent tumble over the past 12 months made selling now “attractive,” analysts at the brokerage Gradual Investimentos wrote in a note to clients.

BM&FBovespa’s shares gained 4.3 percent to 10.68 reais at 1:43 p.m. in Sao Paulo trading, the best performance on its benchmark index, which added 0.7 percent. The Brazilian exchange’s shares have dropped 20 percent over the past year

The relationship between the operators dates to 2007, when CME bought a 10 percent stake in BM&FBovespa and the Brazilian exchange got 2 percent of CME as the companies agreed to cross-list contracts. BM&FBovespa increased its stake in CME to 5 percent in 2010, and the U.S. exchange operator now owns 12 percent of its Brazilian counterpart.

The Ibovespa entered a bear market last month, after tumbling 20 percent from this year’s high in May, as the government struggles to shore up the budget amid forecasts for the longest recession since the 1930s. The economy will shrink 2.4 percent this year and 0.5 percent next year, according to a weekly survey of analysts by the central bank released Tuesday.

Daily average trading at BM&FBovespa fell to 6.75 billion reais this year after ending 2014 at 7.3 billion reais, data compiled by the exchange show.

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