Brazil Real Leads World Gains on Impeachment Vote as Stocks Fall

Dilma Rouseff's Impeachment Moves Forward
  • Currency is the most volatile in emerging markets amid turmoil
  • Estado says lawmaker support for impeachment is growing

Brazil’s real advanced the most among major currencies to the strongest level in seven months as Congress prepared for key votes on the ouster of President Dilma Rousseff. Stocks fell.

Brazil’s currency, the most volatile in emerging markets as traders try to gauge the outlook for a complicated impeachment effort, gained 2.8 percent to 3.4925 per dollar in Sao Paulo, the biggest advance among 16 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg. That was also the strongest level since August. The Ibovespa slipped 0.3 percent to 50,165.47 as planemaker Embraer SA and brewer Ambev SA slumped.

The real was the world’s best-performing currency in the first quarter on wagers that a new government would help pull Brazil out of its worst recession in a century and curb a record fiscal deficit. The real tumbled last year as Brazil lost its coveted investment-grade status and a sweeping corruption scandal hit businesses and the government.

"Markets are closely monitoring the impeachment story as this week could be a turning point in redefining Brazil’s political landscape," said Arnaud Masset, an analyst at Swissquote Bank SA in Gland, Switzerland. "The high uncertainty surrounding the vote will keep assets volatile."

Newspaper O Estado de S.Paulo reported a growing number of lawmakers favor removing the president. A special committee in the lower house was scheduled to vote Monday on whether to move forward with the impeachment request. The full house could vote as early as April 17, potentially setting the stage for Rousseff’s ouster in the Senate.

The cost of insuring Brazilian bonds in the credit-default swaps market for five years declined 12.24 basis points on Monday, the most for a single day this month.

Amid the economic slump, Brazil economists lowered their 2017 forecast for the benchmark interest rate to 12.25 percent from 12.5 percent previously, according to the weekly central bank survey conducted April 8. The current level is 14.25 percent.

They also lowered their 2017 inflation forecast for the first time in nine weeks to 5.95 percent, from 6 percent previously, and their 2016 inflation outlook to 7.14 percent from 7.28 percent.

Swap rates on the contract maturing in January 2017, a gauge of expectations for interest rates, fell 0.04 percentage point to 13.76 percent.

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