Brazil's Stocks Rally on Lower Unemployment, Fed Rate Euphoria

  • Homebuilder MRV gains the most on Ibovespa benchmark
  • Riskier assets gain globally on signal U.S. economy advancing

Brazil’s stocks rose for a third straight day as lower-than-expected unemployment boosted companies that depend on local demand and as global equity benchmarks rallied after the Federal Reserve signaled interest-rate increases will be gradual.

Homebuilder MRV Engenharia was the best performer on the Ibovespa. Lender Itau Unibanco Holding SA, the stock with the biggest weighting on the benchmark stock index, advanced. Grupo BTG Pactual rallied after the supreme court revoked founder Andre Esteves’s prison. Brazil’s national bureau of statistics on Thursday said that unemployment fell to 7.5 percent in November from 7.9 percent a month earlier. Analysts had expected the rate to rise to 8 percent as Latin America’s biggest economy heads toward its longest recession since the 1930s.

Investors flocked to riskier assets all over the world after Fed Chair Janet Yellen said that the American economy is performing well and on a path of sustainable growth. The U.S. is Brazil’s second-biggest trading partner.

"There is good news for the Brazilian market today," Jason Vieira, chief economist at Infinity Asset Management, said from Sao Paulo. "To know that the world’s biggest economy is doing well is positive for everybody."

The Ibovespa rose 0.6 percent to 45,261.48 at the close of trading in Sao Paulo as 38 of its 63 stocks advanced. MRV jumped 5.9 percent; BTG Pactual advanced 7.6 percent to 15.60 reais, and Itau rose 1.7 percent to 28.59 reais.

Brazil’s bechmark stock index has slid 22 percent from this year’s peak in May as the region’s biggest economy contracts. Fitch Ratings Ltd on Wednesday cut the country to junk, following similar decision by Standard & Poor’s in September, after the government failed to get approval for measures intended to shore up finances.

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