An exchange-traded fund investing in Brazilian equities plunged the most since 2011 in Tokyo after President Dilma Rousseff won re-election, damping speculation for a change in policies that have wiped out $553 billion of stock market value and left the economy in recession.
The NEXT FUNDS Ibovespa Linked ETF (1325) dropped 6.8 percent at the close in Tokyo, the biggest loss since September 2011. The benchmark equity gauge for Latin America’s biggest economy, which has rallied 16 percent from this year’s low in March amid bets that Rousseff would be ousted by Senator Aecio Neves, may tumble 10 percent when it opens today, according to Leme Investimentos.
Rousseff, who has maintained record-low unemployment even as the economy recorded the slowest growth under any Brazilian president in more than two decades, had 52 percent of the vote with 99.99 percent of ballots counted by the electoral court in Brasilia. The Ibovespa (IBOV) lost 25 percent since Rousseff took office in January 2011, while shares of state-owned oil producer Petroleo Brasileiro SA (PETR4) tumbled 40 percent and the real weakened 33 percent against the dollar.
“There’s going to be enormous disappointment in the markets that we have not had an opposition victory,” Geoffrey Dennis, the head of emerging-market strategy at UBS AG, said in a phone interview. The Ibovespa may drop as much as 7.6 percent, he said.
Trading in the Tokyo-listed ETF was more than 12 times the three-month average, with the security heading for its lowest close since March 27, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Throughout the campaign, Brazil’s stock market and currency retreated when polls indicated Rousseff might win, including a 6.8 percent drop in the Ibovespa during the final week as polls showed her support rising. Neves, who had pledged to cut public spending and attract more private investment, said in his concession speech that he phoned Rousseff to congratulate her on the victory, calling on the president to unify the country.
Rousseff defended her economic performance by saying she preserved jobs in the face of the global economic crisis. While the economy entered recession in the first half of this year, September’s 4.9 percent unemployment rate was a record low for the month. Real average income has risen 10 percent during Rousseff’s tenure and 33 percent in the past decade.
Investors will turn their focus to Rousseff’s choice for finance minister, said Frederico Sampaio, chief investment officer of Franklin Templeton Investments Brazil, which manages about $900 million. Rousseff said last month that her new government would have a fresh team, including a replacement for Finance Minister Guido Mantega.
The president’s fiscal policies fueled Brazil’s first sovereign rating cut in more than a decade, while the government’s attempts to control inflation by intervening in state-run companies sapped profits at Petrobras and electric utility Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras SA. (ELET6)
“What she has done has been quite negative for the market, so we see a systematic de-rating,” said Pearlyn Wong, a Singapore-based investment analyst at Bank Julius Baer & Co., which oversees about $288 billion worldwide. “We do not recommend buying.”
Quantitas Gestao de Recursos, a Porto Alegre-based investment boutique that manages 15 billion reais ($6.1 billion), estimated last week there is a 50 percent chance Brazil’s rating could be cut to junk in Rousseff’s second term.
Brazil’s dollar bonds returned 8.7 percent this year, trailing the average 10.1 percent advance for investment-grade developing nations, JPMorgan Chase & Co. indexes show. In Rousseff’s first three years in office, the notes posted an annual gain of 5.04 percent, lagging behind the 5.6 percent return for similarly-rated sovereign peers.
The Ibovespa is trading near a five-month low of about 10 times estimated earnings. Stocks won’t be attractive until valuations fall to about 8 times, according to UBS and USAA Investment Management Co.
“Her victory was not totally priced in yet,” Bianca Taylor, a Boston-based senior sovereign analyst and strategist at Loomis Sayles & Co., which oversees $223.2 billion worldwide, including Brazilian sovereign and corporate bonds, said by phone. “We should see a slump in Brazil assets as a whole in the next few days.”