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Itaú ups stake in Chilean unit; Argentine economic slump contagious, IMF warns


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Itaú ups stake in Chilean unit; Argentine economic slump contagious, IMF warns

* Itaú Unibanco Holding SA said it increased its stake in Itaú CorpBanca to 38.14% stake after indirectly acquiring 10,651,555,020 shares in the Chilean bank through its ITB Holding Brasil Participações subsidiary, Diário Comércio Indústria & Serviços reported, citing a regulatory filing. The transaction, which will not change the governance of the Chilean bank, involved the purchase of 100% of the shares held by two companies owned by the Grupo Saieh conglomerate, Diario Financiero reported.

* The International Monetary Fund warned that if the Argentine recession deteriorates, it will affect the economy of neighboring countries that hold strong commercial ties. The IMF, which expects the Argentine economy to shrink 2.60% in 2018, encouraged economic policymakers in emerging markets to use all the tools at their disposal to contain expected capital outflows.


* Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray told the Chinese government that Mexico's new trade agreement with Canada and the U.S. will not obstruct economic ties with other states, Reuters reported, citing a foreign ministry statement. The new trade pact, called the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, does not include any conditions that "constitute an obstacle for bilateral relations or economic exchanges that Mexico, as a sovereign state, maintains with other nations," Videgaray told his Chinese counterpart.

* Mexico's industrial output declined 0.5% in August from the previous month, representing the largest fall since September 2017, Reuters reported, citing the country's national statistics agency. However, industrial output increased 0.2% compared to August 2017.

* Fitch Ratings assigned long-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings of BBB+ and short-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings of F2 to Asigna, Compensación y Liquidación F/30430 Fiso Bancomer SA. The company's ratings are riven by the ability and propensity of support from ultimate parent, Bolsa Mexicana de Valores SAB de CV.

* Mexican President-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador confirmed his intention to appoint Rabindranath Salazar as head of newly named development bank Banco del Bienestar del Pueblo, currently called the Banco del Ahorro Nacional y Servicios Financieros SNC, El Financiero reported.

* The new head of Guatemala's SIB banking industry regulator, Erick Vargas Sierra, has vowed to seek congressional approval on a reform of banking legislation aimed at bringing the country in line with international standards on money laundering and terrorism financing, El Periodico reported. He said restoring access to banking information, which was suspended by the constitutional court, was necessary to stop the country being included on a global blacklist.


* Banco ABC Brasil SA garnered central bank approval to raise 91.8 million reais in fresh capital through the issuance of new private shares. The bank will issue 7,563,706 new shares, composed of 3,885,739 common shares and 3,677,967 preferred shares.


* Peruvian President Martin Vizcarra's approval rating increased by 16 points to a high of 61% in a monthly poll conducted by Ipsos, Reuters reported. The rise came after Vizcarra threatened to dissolve the country's opposition-run Congress if it did not approve his anti-graft proposals. Peru's Congress ultimately passed the legislation last week.

* Peru's central bank has warned of multiple risks to the country's economy including increased global market volatility as well as heightened local political noise and the possibility of more adverse weather linked to El Niño, El Comercio reported, citing the entity's latest monetary policy statement.

* Peru's SBS banking and insurance industry supervisor will issue new regulations this week aimed at easing the impact of a possible increase in insurance costs for AFP pension plan holders, Gestión reported. The regulations include measures to implement gradually new tables on increased life expectancy over a three-year period to avoid a sudden increase in costs for policyholders.

* Colombian central bank governor Juan José Echavarría said the market was betting on excessive monetary tightening in 2019, saying the monetary authority would increase rates slowly if the exchange rate remained stable, El Tiempo reported. He said that while the market expected a one-percentage point rate hike next year, the central bank would need inflation expectations to rise to consider an increase of that size.


* Banco Central de la República Argentina laid out the third stage of its Lebac reduction plan, through which the central bank will only renew between 100 billion and 150 billion pesos out of some 231 billion pesos worth of notes held by nonbank investors that are set to mature. The plan will gradually halve the stock of the notes through December, after which they will only be held by banks. The move is a part of a broader monetary policy scheme that will see new seven-day Leliq notes, which are only for Argentine banks, replace the Lebac notes.

* Trade union leaders representing staff at Banco de la República Oriental del Uruguay pressed their demands over wage delays linked to the introduction of a new computer system by announcing protest measures expected to affect ATM services from Oct. 12, El País reported. It quoted AEBU leader Álvaro Legaspi as saying staff would stop performing all duties related to ATM machines across the country.

* Chile's central bank is expected to hold its benchmark monetary policy rate at 2.50% at its next board meeting this week and raise it to 2.75% in December, Diario Financiero reported, citing the entity's latest survey of market expectations. Respondents expect the rate to rise to 3.0% in March 2019.


* Colombia and Uruguay's insurance industry grew the fastest in Latin America between 2016 and 2017, increasing its share in their respective economies by 0.2 percentage points compared with the increase of 0.1 percentage point registered in Chile, Brazil and Argentina, according to a report in Swiss Re's Sigma magazine, La República reported.


* Asia-Pacific: CBA appoints CFO; KKR eyes Indian portfolios; ANZ to expand again in Asia

* Middle East & Africa: Saudi stocks slump after US threat; StanChart to launch digital bank in Ghana

* Europe: UK firms warned on climate change; German online bank N26 in breach of rules

Helen Popper contributed to this article.

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