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Brazil's real scales 3-week high as US jobs data backs Fed cut bets

Brazil's real scales 3-week high as US jobs data backs Fed cut bets
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The Brazilian real reached a three-week high against the US dollar, as weaker-than-expected US jobs data raised expectations of interest rate cuts by the US Federal Reserve. This led to a boost in Latin American currencies and stocks, with traders pricing in more US rate cuts. Brazil's industrial output also rose less than expected in March, while Panama prepares for its presidential election on Sunday. The Central American country's government rebuked Fitch Ratings late in March after it cut Panama's sovereign bonds to speculative grade. Stock markets in the region also climbed, with indexes in Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia up between 0.3% and 1.1%. The Latam MSCI stocks index was also on track for weekly gains of 1.1%. Foreign exchange experts expect a small depreciation in the Mexican peso in the medium term as the country navigates between a relatively firm economy and some political doubts. On the day, the peso inched up 0.2%. The content was provided by Sruthi Shankar and Johann M Cherian in Bengaluru and edited by Mark Heinrich and Jonathan Oatis.