Latin America

Latin America Looks to Strengthen U.S. Trade Relations and Step Back From China

The United States has long referred to Latin America as its "backyard", and held a strong economic influence on its southern neighbors.

But someone else is moving in.

China's trade with Latin American countries has surged over the past few years, weakening the region's economic relationship with the United States. Now some of those nations - especially Brazil - want to strengthen U.S. ties to reduce their dependence on the world's second-largest economy.

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When Investing in Latin America, Politics Point the Way to Profits

Brazil's election win by the Workers Party candidate Dilma Rousseff has cast a dark shadow over the investment prospects of that long-fashionable "BRIC" economy.

And it has underscored an important lesson for investors: In Latin America, the political climate is really the No. 1 factor in determining where to invest for the long run.

In short, when looking to invest in Latin America, let politics be your guide to profits.

To learn which Latin American markets offer the biggest profits, please read on...

As the Rescue of the Chilean Miners Shows, this South American Country is Superbly Managed and an Enticing Investment

The efficient, well-managed rescue of the 33 Chilean miners was an affecting spectacle for the world. It also should remind us that Chile is a well-run country, and that in an era when commodities are ever more important to the global economy, it is becoming an essential part of investors' portfolios.

To find out how investors can cash in on this emerging economic powerhouse read on...

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Four Emerging Markets Making Waves Around the World

I'm focused like a laser beam on emerging markets this year, because there is much more at play than just relative strength. This is where the economic growth in the world is occurring.

I hope you are participating. And if you're not, don't worry - there's still time to get in and make a profit before the mainstream catches on.

Let's take a look at a few of my favorite plays right now, beginning with Singapore and Thailand - two economies I told investors to keep an eye on earlier this month.

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Investing Strategies: How to Build a Global-Investing Portfolio Using ETFs

It wasn't all that long ago that global investing was an activity that was restricted to only the wealthiest U.S. investors. If you weren't one of America's ultra-rich, you weren't able to access foreign markets.

That began to change in the 1950s, with the advent of international and global mutual funds, and access further expanded over the next three decades with the introduction of single-country closed-end funds. Today, thanks to the recent explosion in exchange-traded funds (ETFs), investing in overseas stocks is now almost as easy as targeting a given market sector here at home.

In fact, although it has been a mere 17 years since the first ETF began trading in the United States (in 1993), the most recent count finds more than 290 international, regional and foreign-country-focused funds listed on the various U.S. exchanges - enough to entice any investor with even a modest yen for overseas portfolio exposure.

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It's Time to Invest in Chile and Colombia – Latin America's Reigning 'Good Guys'

For decades, investors with an interest in Latin America were essentially limited to two choices: Invest in countries that were moderately badly run; or invest in countries that were truly dreadfully run.

Most recently, it's been the "dreadfully run" group that seems to be attracting new members: Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua have subscribed to the economic and political doctrines of Hugo Chavez's Venezuela.

However, two elections this year have created a new category of Latin American country - the "truly well run" class - and installed the first two members: Chile and Colombia. As investors, we should rejoice, make them part of our portfolio, and keep an eagle eye out for other countries that may join this promising new category - the "good guys."

For an overview of the two Latin America stocks to buy now, please read on...

Buy, Sell or Hold: Deere and Co. Thrives on Strong Global Trends and Flawless Execution

Deere & Co. (NYSE: DE) beat earnings estimates by a mile last week. It reported $1.58 earnings per share, beating most analysts' estimates by 50 cents! In addition, the company raised its earnings outlook.

In typical fashion, Deere continues to be conservative in guidance. And as I will explain below, the agricultural cycle this year is poised for a large upside surprise, as it is at the very beginning of a prolonged secular pickup.

The bottom line of Deere's performance last quarter is a prelude of things to come. Agriculture is zooming, and thus machinery in that sector is - and will continue - to command premium pricing. At the same time, global inflation is picking up slightly, but is still very subdued, which will help margins some more.

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The Winners and Losers in the 'Commodities New World Order'

In the "commodities new world order," commodity producers will be king.

Investors who need proof need only consider recent events. Iron ore prices are at record levels, and the annual-price-setting arrangement has broken down. Venezuela President Hugo Chávez has signed "dark side" agreements with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin for Russian companies to develop Venezuela's oil-and-mineral resources. China may have invested $1 trillion or so in U.S. Treasuries, but the Asian giant's only truly successful investment so far has been the 17% stake it took in Canadian-resources player Teck Resources Ltd. (NYSE: TCK).

Welcome to the commodities new world order. These events serve notice that - as we put the global financial crisis behind us - the commodity "haves" will set the agenda ... while the commodity "have nots" will fall farther and farther behind.

To discover the identities of the new-world-order winners – and losers – please read on...

Investing in Peru – South America's Hidden Gem

When investing in the emerging markets, you need to cast your net beyond the obvious candidates. Granted, China, Brazil and India have emerged to become very attractive investment stories (I don't trust Russia, the fourth and final "BRIC" economy).

But everyone else has heard of them, too, which is why their markets have been bid up very high in the past year. Their prospects remain excellent, but you're paying a lot for them.

From time to time, however, a country that has been off investors' radar screens has a few good years, and begins to creep onto them. In such countries, risk may be high, but values at least remain reasonable.

That's why it might be worth investing in Peru.



To find out why Peru may be worth a look right now, please read on...

U.S. Loses Crown as King of M&A to Emerging Markets

Maybe U.S. investment bankers are losing their touch.

For the first time since Thomson Reuters began keeping track in 1976, fewer merger and acquisition (M&A) deals were done in the United States in the first six weeks of 2010 than in emerging-markets.

During that stretch, emerging markets such as India, Mexico, Brazil and China accounted for 43% of global M&A volume with $91.2 billion worth of deals. That outpaced the United States, which completed roughly $55 billion in deals, accounting for a 29.5% share.

Surprisingly, Mexico alone did more volume, with 19.1% of the market versus Europe's 17.1% share.

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Which Sector Will Step Up and Lead Bulls in 2010?

Digging beneath the surface of the late 2009 market for clues, we find that some measures of breadth continue to deteriorate even as the major indices continue to float near their highs. For example, the percentage of stocks above their 10-day moving average has gone from 81% on Christmas Eve to 71% now. This is an indication that buyers have become more selective.

This adds to a trend that's been developing over the last few months. While the NASDAQ has managed an impressive breakout from its multi-month trading range, it's doing this on the back of fewer and fewer stocks based on the number that are over their 50-day moving average. Part of the problem is the lack of clear market leadership.

One of the reasons that the bull cycle of the past year has been so strong is that it had a rotating cast of leaders: First banks, then retailers, then tech, then energy, then materials, and so on.

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Four Ways to Profit From the World's Shrewdest Government

Three powerful investment trends will separate the winners from the losers in the new year.

  • Global commodities prices will continue to move higher.
  • Emerging economies will outgrow their richer, more-mature counterparts.
  • And the countries that were stingy with their monetary and fiscal bailout plans will now reap the benefits; they will outpace the countries that slashed their interest rates to zero and allowed their deficits to soar.
One country is poised to profit from all three of those trends. What's more, the political worries that always seem to diminish its allure to investors are poised to recede, making this emerging southern hemisphere heavyweight one of the premiere profit opportunities for 2010.

I'm talking about Chile.

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How to Profit From Chile, Latin America's Real Economic Powerhouse

By Jason Simpkins Managing Editor Money Morning Brazil is often thought of as the best, if not only, investment play in Latin America, but Chile – with its equally abundant resources and sound fiscal governance – is emerging as an impressive economic rival. In fact, Moody's Investment Service last month raised Chile's sovereign debt rating […]

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Latin America Pulling Away from a Slowing U.S. Economy

By Jason Simpkins Associate Editor Concerns about the U.S. economic slowdown are starting to blunt some of the optimism surrounding Latin American economies. And while some of the more-timid investors are already retreating from the region, the actual panic some are experiencing is premature, as Latin American economies are demonstrating a much stronger ter resilience […]

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