EMERGING MARKETS-Brazil stocks hit 3-month high as JBS jumps

    By Bruno Federowski
    SAO PAULO, Aug 8 (Reuters) - Brazilian stocks on Tuesday
rose to a new three-month high, helped by shares of JBS SA after
the head of development bank BNDES hinted that he would support
a change in management of the world's largest meatpacker.
    In an event in São Paulo, BNDES head Paulo Rabello de Castro
called JBS Chief Executive Officer Wesley Batista was a "player
who scored goals" but that did not meant that "he would be
picked by the coach for the next match."
    The Batista family, who controls JBS through holding company
J&F Investimentos SA, has admitted to paying bribes to hundreds
of politicians. The participation arms of BNDES, which holds a
21-percent stake in JBS, is among shareholders asking for his
ouster from management.
    Common shares in JBS rose 6.5 percent on Tuesday,
hitting the highest since June 1. It was the biggest gainer on
Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index, which advanced
0.7 percent.
    Shares of for-profit college operator Estácio Participações
SA rose 2.3 percent after Morgan Stanley Securities
increase their price target on the stock to 26.90 reais from
24.50 reais.
    Moves in the Brazilian real, however, were muted, as
traders awaited further moves on President Michel Temer's plans
to streamline the social security system.
    Planning Minister Dyogo Oliveira on Monday said the
government will seek to approve its proposed pension overhaul
without further changes in Congress as it rushes to reduce a
budget deficit.
    "Markets are more optimistic but there are lingering doubts
over whether Temer has enough political capital to see it
approved," Rico brokerage chief analyst Roberto Indech said.
    The Mexican peso strengthened 0.2 percent,
rebounding from a one-month low in thin trading volumes.
Investors avoided risky bets ahead of the beginning of
negotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
    Optimism has grown that the United States, Mexico and Canada
will soon reach an agreement, dispelling fears of a trade war
stoked by U.S. President Donald Trump's protectionist rhetoric.
The Mexican peso has been among the world's best-performing
currencies this year as those concerns waned.
    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1720 GMT:
 Stock indexes                    Latest        Daily  YTD pct
                                                  pct   change
 MSCI Emerging Markets              1,079.21     0.36    24.71
 MSCI LatAm                         2,817.69      0.7    19.54
 Brazil Bovespa                    68,387.22     0.66    13.55
 Mexico S&P/BVM IPC                51,662.69     0.53    13.19
 Chile IPSA                         5,121.46    -0.38    23.37
 Chile IGPA                        25,531.16    -0.38    23.14
 Argentina MerVal                  21,449.21    -0.14    26.78
 Colombia IGBC                     10,887.13    -0.36     7.49
 Venezuela IBC                    196,759.16     0.69   520.59
 Currencies                           Latest    Daily  YTD pct
                                                  pct   change
 Brazil real                          3.1262    -0.05     3.93
 Mexico peso                         17.8850     0.21    15.99
 Chile peso                              648     0.43     3.50
 Colombia peso                      2,993.93    -0.50     0.25
 Peru sol                              3.242     0.00     5.31
 Argentina peso (interbank)          17.7225    -0.13   -10.42
 Argentina peso (parallel)             18.27    -0.44    -7.94
 (Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

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