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Financial News: ARGENTINA: Merval Falls 0.27%, Affected By Political Situa

ARGENTINA: Merval Falls 0.27%, Affected By Political Situation

12/17/2017 - 22:13:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Merval, the main index of the Buenos Aires Stock Exchange, gave up on earlier gains and closed 0.27% down at 27,063.66 points Friday, in the face of the hurdles faced by Mauricio Macri's administration to move ahead with his pension reform bill. However, during the week, the Argentinean stock market gained 0.74%.

"Undoubtedly, the political scandal unleashed yesterday in Congress by the pension reform affected much to the local variable income segment," said Eduardo Fernandez, an analyst at Rava Bursátil.

The Argentinean government has decided to vote on the pension reform bill on Monday, amid speculation that Mauricio Macri's administration could use a decree to fast-track the legislation. Pro-government representatives tried to move ahead with the vote on the pension reform - but due to incidents and complaints inside and outside of Congress, the session was suspended, marking a setback to Macri, who seeks to approve the legislation before the end of the year.

Meanwhile, Pampa Energía rose 1.13% after a purchase recommendation by the Brazilian bank Bradesco. "Argentina's energy sector is recovering rapidly, after more than a decade without a regulatory framework, without investment, and with frozen tariffs, and Pampa Energía should stand out in this new phase," according to a Bradesco report.

In the energy sector, Petrobras (+0.54%) and ExxonMobil signed a memorandum of understanding regarding a strategic alliance to identify and evaluate potential business opportunities.

YPF (-2.78%) entered into an understanding agreement with GE Energy Financial Services that establishes the framework conditions under which the parties will agree on the capitalization of YPF Energía Eléctrica S.A. (YPF EE).

The locally traded U.S. dollar rose 0.37%, closing at 17.51 Argentinean pesos, due to banks and companies purchases for investment hedges.

"It was logical that many banks, companies, and investors to pay upward without fear because they had to cover short positions, since it was not expected changes in the political scene so fast," said Fernando Izzo, an analyst at ABC Mercado de Cambios.

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