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EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks rally; Brazil's real firms after comments

       * Much of work on interest rates is done - Brazil cenbank
    * Ecuador could stop pumping oil within 48 hours due to
    * Petrobras shares surge, elects new CEO
    * Argentina tightens FX access to protect forex reserves

 (Updates prices)
    By Susan Mathew
    June 27 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks rallied on Monday,
tracking broader emerging market peers, while Brazil's real
moved away from multi-month lows after the central bank said the
inflation surge could start to slow.
    The real rose 0.5% after hovering at its lowest since
    Brazil's central bank chief Roberto Campos Neto said on
Monday that much of the bank's work on interest rates was done
and was now expected to slow down the inflationary process.
    Brazil's benchmark Selic rate was hiked by 50 basis points
to 13.25% this month, and more were signaled.
    "Campos' speech ... is in line with our call of a 50bps hike
of Selic rate in August," wrote strategists at Citigroup.
    "But risks of additional hikes keep rising," they said,
given the higher than midpoint target inflation forecast for
2023. They expect the central bank to start cutting rates only
in the second half of 2023.
    Most other Latam currencies fell against a weaker dollar.
    In Ecuador, oil production could be suspended completely
within 48 hours over "acts of vandalism, taking over wells and
closing roads", the energy ministry said on Sunday.
    The country, which was pumping around 520,000 barrels per
day has been embroiled in mass anti-government protests since
June 13, with calls for lower prices for fuel, food and other
    President Guillermo Lasso announced a price cut for gasoline
and diesel by 10 cents a gallon, but indigenous organizations
deemed it insufficient.
    Among stocks, even as Wall Street slipped, Latam bourses
rallied between 1.2% and 2.5%. Easing COVID-19 restrictions in
China lifted the mood as it allayed some concerns about the hit
to economic growth in the world's second largest economy.
    This comes after sentiment globally got a lift late last
week as traders scaled back bets on how high the Federal Reserve
will raise interest rates.
    The broader index of EM shares rose 1.6%.
    Brazil's Bovespa index was on course for its best
session in more than three months as oil major Petrobras
 jumped 5.9%.
    Petrobras' board elected former economy ministry official
Caio Paes de Andrade as its new chief executive. Andrade is set
to replace interim CEO Fernando Borges.
    In Argentina, the highly controlled peso fell 0.4%.
The central bank tightened access to foreign exchange markets
for importers including buyers of high-end products like luxury
cars and private jets, as it sought to protect low levels of
foreign currency reserves.
    Markets in Chile and Colombia were closed for local

    Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1857 GMT:
   Stock indexes            Latest    Daily %
 MSCI Emerging Markets       1026.90     1.55

 MSCI LatAm                  2091.68     1.99

 Brazil Bovespa            100700.92     2.06

 Mexico IPC                 48324.72     1.22

 Argentina MerVal           84678.21    2.509

       Currencies           Latest    Daily %
 Brazil real                  5.2250     0.48

 Mexico peso                 19.9119    -0.31

 Peru sol                     3.7648     0.11

 Argentina peso             124.7000    -0.35

 (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Alison
Williams and Alistair Bell)

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