* BM&FBOVESPA SA – Bolsa de Valores Mercadorias e Futuros said it is now the largest shareholder of Bolsa de Valores de Lima SA after raising its stake to 8.59% through about 50.7 million Peruvian soles in market purchases. BM&FBOVESPA also noted that its board appointed Roberto Augusto Belchior da Silva to serve as the company's managing director of market development for Latin America.
* Grupo Financiero Banorte SAB de CV posted net income of about 5.24 billion Mexican pesos for the fourth quarter of 2016, up 6% from 4.94 billion pesos in the year-ago period. The company's net interest income grew 7% annually to 13.17 billion pesos, while provisions jumped 31% to 3.26 billion pesos.
MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA
* The Mexican peso fell sharply on Jan. 26 after White House spokesman Sean Spicer said U.S. President Donald Trump is looking to institute a 20% tax on Mexican imports to pay for his proposed border wall between the two countries, Reuters reported. Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto canceled his planned trip to Washington, but Foreign Relations Minister Luis Videgaray said the two sides will "keep talking," Bloomberg News reported.
* Executives at Citigroup Inc. are optimistic about the Mexican economy and local unit Banco Nacional de México SA Integrante del Grupo Financiero Banamex as they expect low labor costs to boost the country's competitiveness in global exports even if the new U.S. government alters existing trade deals, Reuters reported.
* In a statement to S&P Global Market Intelligence, BM&FBOVESPA SA confirmed that it will suspend 16 companies from public trading due to a lack of compliance with one or more of the stock exchange operator's rules. The names of the companies under suspension will be disclosed following market trading Jan. 27.
* The volume of lending operations in Brazil totaled 3.107 trillion reais in December 2016, down 3.5% from year-ago levels, according to central bank data. Delinquency rates for all loans came to 3.7% in December 2016, down 10 basis points from the previous month but up 70 basis points from a year ago.
* Brazilian Trade Minister Marcos Pereira said his country could improve commercial relations with Pacific and European states if the new U.S. government adopts protectionist policies, Reuters reported. "So far, Brazil has not appeared in Trump's sights," he said. "I think Brazilian manufacturers will not be hurt and that our trade discussions with Washington will continue to advance."
* Brazil's National Monetary Council announced new rules for revolving credit lines extended by credit card firms in order to lower interest rates for consumers, Reuters reported. It said consumers who fail to fully pay their monthly bills can only use revolving credit lines for one month. Under the new rules, which banks must comply with by April 3, the balance must be financed in installments at reduced rates.
* The Brazilian central bank's recent decision to relax reserve requirements for commercial banks could result in higher lending and less stringent regulation for the sector, Reuters reported, citing Banco Santander (Brasil) SA CEO Sérgio Rial.
* Brazilian Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles confirmed that an eventual privatization of state bank Banco do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul SA is part of the federal government's debt relief talks with the state of Rio Grande do Sul, but a final decision has not been reached, Valor Econômico reported.
* Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social reduced lending by a record 12.8% in 2016, contributing to an overall decline in lending of 3.7% by Brazil's public banks last year, Valor Econômico reported. Separately, the bank said the entry of a new investor in a project to renovate Rio de Janeiro's Galeão airport is vital for the project's success.
* Banco Santander (Brasil) SA CEO Sérgio Rial said the bank will boost lending to small and medium-sized enterprises in 2017 after lending to the sector fell 7.6% annually in 2016, Diário Comércio Indústria & Serviços reported.
* Peruvian Economy Minister Alfredo Thorne said the country's economy would grow 3.8% in 2017 without any stimulus efforts, but with many government investments lined up, growth could reach up to 4.8%, Gestión reported.
* S&P Global Ratings revised its outlook on Chile to negative from stable to reflect the risk that prolonged low economic growth could translate into larger-than-expected fiscal deficits, leading to continued high increases in government debt. This will likely weaken the sovereign's financial profile and could also contribute to erosion in the country's external position. S&P also affirmed its AA- long-term and A-1+ short-term foreign currency ratings on Chile.
* Argentina-based Deutsche Bank SA said Siro Pablo Astolfi stepped down from his director position for "personal reasons." Deputy director Julieta De Ruggiero will replace him until the company's next annual general meeting.
* A survey by Fitch Ratings showed that Chilean investment managers maintain high standards aligned with global best practices for front office operations. Most managers surveyed employ a relatively balanced, bottom-up perspective, the rating agency said.
* Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires SA's board approved the issuance of class III negotiable obligations for a total amount of up to $550.0 million, or its equivalent in other currencies. Proceeds from the placement will be used for various purposes, including for working capital in Argentina and the refinancing of liabilities.
* Chilean banking association Abif said the country's private banks will evaluate loan repricing for people affected by wildfires on a case-by-case basis, Pulso reported.
* Argentine securities commission CNV approved the creation of a closed fund dedicated to investments in renewable energy, El Cronista reported.
* Economic activity in Argentina contracted 1.4% in November 2016 compared to a year ago, but increased 1.4% from the previous month, Reuters reported, citing government data.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
* Europe: UBS profit drops sharply; Sabadell's remains stable; HSH Nordbank sells NPLs
S&P Global Ratings and S&P Global Market Intelligence are owned by S&P Global Inc.
Matthew Craze contributed to this article.
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