Most Brazilian Stocks Fall as Growth Concern Pushes Gafisa Lower

Most Brazilian stocks dropped as a report forecast to show that job growth stalled last month added to concern that the recovery in Latin America’s biggest economy is faltering.

Gafisa SA led losses by homebuilders, and Banco Santander Brasil SA was the worst performer among banks. Planemaker Embraer SA rallied after saying it received an order for jets that could be worth as much as $8.3 billion.

The Ibovespa was little changed at 55,697.41 at 12:47 p.m. in Sao Paulo. Thirty-seven stocks dropped on the index while 32 climbed. The real added 0.1 percent to 2.0365 per dollar. Brazil’s Labor Ministry will report today that the nation added 210,000 government-registered jobs in April, according to the median forecast of 15 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. That compares with 216,974 jobs added a year earlier.

“We hear government officials saying that growth will speed up in the second half of the year, but we can’t be sure that this will happen,” Marc Sauerman, who helps oversee 650 million reais at Curitiba, Brazil-based J. Malucelli Investimentos, said in a telephone interview. “There are too many uncertainties.”

Gafisa fell 0.8 percent to 3.75 reais. Santander Brasil lost 1 percent to 14.90 reais. Embraer rose 1.9 percent to 19.25 reais after saying in a regulatory filing that SkyWest Inc. agreed to buy as many as 200 jets. Shares earlier jumped as much as 4.8 percent.

HRT Plunges

Oil company HRT Participacoes em Petroleo SA plunged 19 percent to a record low 2.67 reais after saying in a regulatory filing that a well drilled in Brazil’s Solimoes basin is dry and another in Namibia has no commercial volume of crude.

The Ibovespa has declined 8.6 percent this year, the worst performer after Colombia’s IGBC index among 19 major emerging markets, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Brazil’s benchmark equity index trades at 12.3 times analysts’ earnings estimates for the next four quarters, compared with a multiple of 10.9 for the MSCI Emerging Markets Index of 21 developing nations’ equities, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Trading volume for stocks in Sao Paulo was 10.7 billion reais yesterday, compared with a daily average of 7.71 billion reais this year through May 17, according to data compiled by the exchange.

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