EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks dip on thin volume, Brazil options

Mon Jan 17, 2011 10:50am EST
* Stock options set to expire in Sao Paulo
* Holiday keeps U.S. financial markets closed
* Brazil's Bovespa down 0.29 pct, Mexico's IPC up 0.22 pct
By Luciana Lopez

SAO PAULO, Jan 17 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks dipped
in early trading on Monday as a U.S. holiday kept markets
abroad closed and the expiration of Brazilian stock options

The MSCI Latin American stocks index .MILA00000PUS
slipped 0.15 percent, for what could be a third straight
session of losses.

With U.S. stock markets closed for the Martin Luther King,
Jr holiday, "we're somewhat without a reference point," said
Raphael Martello, an economist at Tendencias Consultoria in Sao

"There's some movement because stock options are expiring,"
he added.
The expiration of stock options in Sao Paulo typically
boosts the volume of some heavyweight stocks in Brazil.
In addition, European leaders were slated to meet to
discuss an increase in the effective lending capacity of the
euro zone rescue fund.

The euro zone debt crisis has rattled markets over the past
year, with investors shedding riskier assets such as emerging
market equities.

Successful discussions on a bailout fund could "improve the
perception that they're looking at the resources they can make
available," said Raffi Dokuzian of Banif brokerage in Sao

"It's an important signal that Europe is taking strong
measures so that countries with momentary difficulties won't
have credit problems," he said.
Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index .BVSP fell 0.29
percent, giving up gains from Friday.
Banks fell -- Itau Unibanco (ITUB4.SA) was down 1.19
percent, Banco do Brasil (BBAS3.SA), Latin America's largest
bank by assets, declined 1.38 percent and Bradesco (BBDC4.SA)
gave up 1.11 percent.
Liming losses, preferred shares of mining company Vale
(VALE5.SA) gained 0.63 percent, as the company's common stock
(VALE3.SA) moved up 0.45 percent. Shares of state-controlled
energy company Petrobras (PETR4.SA) rose 0.29 percent.
Source: Reuters.Com