EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil, Chile stocks rise; Mexico lags

* Major gas find by OGX, local earnings lift Brazil

* Chile gains as central bank points to strong growth

* Bovespa rises 0.57 pct, Chile’s IPSA up 0.85 pct

By Luciana Lopez and Brad Haynes

SAO PAULO/SANTIAGO, Aug 13 (BestGrowthStock) – Latin American
stocks rose on Thursday, backed by gains in Brazilian shares
after a major natural gas find and a rise in the Chilean market
despite a move by the central bank to tighten borrowing costs.

The MSCI Latin American stocks index (.MILA00000PUS: ) added
0.39 percent, helping curb sharp losses this week.

The Thomson Reuters Latin America total return index
(.TRXFLDLATU: ) rose 0.32 percent.

Solid growth in Chile and Brazil has helped keep up
interest in Latin American stocks amid concerns the United
States and Europe are slowing and could eventually tip back
into recession.

“Brazil remains a bright spot as growth is expected to
remain strong,” said Pedro Tuesta, an analyst at consultancy
4CAST in Washington.

Brazil’s Bovespa index (.BVSP: ) rose 0.57 percent as shares
in OGX (OGXP3.SA: ), controlled by industrialist Eike Batista,
jumped 4.85 percent.

Batista said late on Thursday that OGX (OGXP3.SA: ) may have
found enough natural gas to nearly double the country’s
reserves, which could help curb dependence on Bolivian gas.
[ID:nN12147309]

Real estate developer Rossi Residencial (RSID3.SA: ) climbed
3.4 percent after the company announced on Thursday its
second-quarter profit (Read more your timing to make a profit.) more than doubled from a year ago.
[ID:nN12152660]

CHILE HIKES

In Chile, the central bank raised its benchmark rate to 2
percent and noted domestic demand and activity were more
dynamic than seen in the bank’s previous policy report in
June.

Stock investors brushed off the move to tighten borrowing
costs, focusing instead on the country’s solid growth
prospects. Chile’s IPSA index (.IPSA: ) added 0.85 percent.

“We should see Chilean stocks performing well, given that
Chile’s economy is recovering much more forcefully than most
developed economies,” said Marcel Catalan, an analyst at the
BCI brokerage in Santiago.

Industrial conglomerate Copec (COP.SN: ) added 1.41 percent
while retailer Falabella (FAL.SN: ) rose 1.48 percent. Leading
airline Lan (LAN.SN: ) (LFL.N: ) was up 1.54 percent.

Mexico’s IPC stock index lagged gains (.MXX: ) adding 0.16
percent as shares in America Movil (AMXL.MX: ), Latin America’s
biggest wireless provider, added 0.67 percent.

Offsetting gains, top U.S. cement supplier Cemex
(CMXCPO.MX: ) fell 0.98 percent and touched a more than one-year
low.

GLOBAL RISKS

U.S. data showing rising consumer confidence in August and
a rebound in retail sales in July offered some hope amid a
string of data showing the U.S. economy is slowing down.

Mexico sends around 80 percent of its exports to its
northern neighbor and June industrial data released this weak
showed output, compared to the previous month, fell for the
first time in five months.

Analysts warned that mounting concerns about signs of
weakness in the United States, Europe and Asia could eventually
weigh down gains across Latin America as well.

Fears of a global economic slowdown knocked around 2.8
percent off the MSCI Latin American index this week, putting it
on track to mark its worst week since the end of June.

“The market is nervous with the slow pace of those
economies (in Europe and the US), and thinking the recovery is
going to be fast is a big mistake. The return to the previous
pace could take another three years,” wrote analysts at Gradual
Investimentos in Sao Paulo.

Dragging in Brazil, shares in TAM (TAMM4.SA: ), the country’s
largest airline, dipped 4.83 percent after the company posted
on Thursday a loss in the second quarter. [ID:nN12152533]
(Additional reporting and writing by Michael O’Boyle in Mexico
City; Editing by Diane Craft)

EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil, Chile stocks rise; Mexico lags