Brazil Real headed for biggest weekly rally in emerging markets

Filipe Pacheco & Josue Leonel – Bloomberg, 2/21/2014

The real advanced, extending the biggest weekly gain in emerging markets, as Brazil reported higher-than-forecast foreign investment a day after the government pledged to reduce spending.

The currency appreciated 0.6 percent to 2.3555 per U.S. dollar at 2:26 p.m. in Sao Paulo, the strongest on a closing basis since Jan. 20. The currency was headed for a weekly increase of 1.3 percent, the biggest among 24 emerging-market currencies. Swap rates maturing in January 2016 fell eight basis points, or 0.08 percentage point, to 11.74 percent, extending their decrease since Feb. 14 to 49 basis points.

While the central bank reported that foreign direct investment declined to $5.1 billion last month, the amount was higher than the median forecast of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, which called for $4 billion. Brazil posted a $11.6 billion deficit in the current account, the broadest measure of trade in goods and services, compared with the $11.7 billion median estimate.

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