World Cup Fever Boosts Beer and Wine Stocks in Chile

Cia. Cervecerias Unidas SA and Vina Concha & Toro SA, Chile’s biggest brewery and winemaker respectively, rallied as the country’s soccer team unexpectedly beat Spain to qualify for the World Cup’s round of 16.

CCU jumped 3.2 percent, the most in nine months, and Concha & Toro surged 3.4 percent. The stocks led gains in Chile’s benchmark Ipsa index, which advanced 1.1 percent.

Office workers poured out of buildings in downtown Santiago chanting “Chi-chi-chi! Le-le-le!” as cars honked horns and confetti filled the air during half time of the match at Rio de Janeiro’s Maracana stadium. The final score of 2-0 marked a second win for Chile and signaled higher sales of alcoholic beverages. Spain became the first title holders to be eliminated after just two games of the next tournament.

“It’s wine and beer,” Eric Conrads, a portfolio manager at ING Investment Management, said from New York. “They went up when Chile scored because people expect higher consumption. Volumes are low because everyone’s basically watching the TV.”

An ING survey showed Chileans would pay more money than any other nation for their team to win the World Cup. Chileans would be willing to part with 526 euros ($714), compared with 429 euros in neighboring Argentina, according to the survey of about 8,000 people in 15 countries.

Chile’s government is urging soccer fans to refrain from their traditional barbecues as they watch the national side in the World Cup today because the clouds of smoke from charred meat are worsening the capital’s smog.

Critical Levels

“When we have low winds and we’re at critical levels what we are saying is that people should avoid burning charcoal because that makes the air quality worse,” Claudio Orrego, the government official responsible for the Santiago region, told reporters today. “I’ve been the butt of a lot of jokes for this and I take it with humor, but I also urge people to take it seriously.”

Chile got first-half goals from Charles Aranguiz and Eduardo Vargas to put Spain on the path home. The current World and European title holders were eliminated from the tournament.

Aranguiz controlled a rebound from Iker Casillas and toed the ball into the Spanish goal just before the end of the half. Vargas was able to slip the ball past Casillas in the Spanish goal in the 20th minute after controlling a loose ball in the Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro.