BUENOS AIRES, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Argentine stocks rebounded from early losses to close higher on Friday, lifted by a fleeting recovery on Wall Street and gains by index heavyweight Tenaris, while bonds fell for a third straight session.
The MerVal benchmark index .MERV rose 0.68 percent to 1,022.81 points after dipping 1.86 percent in mid-day trading.
Tenaris (TENA.BA), a leading global maker of steel oil drilling equipment, rose 4.2 percent to 42.1 pesos.
“Tenaris again was the refuge for investors,” said Leopoldo Olivari, a trader at Bacque brokerage.
Olivari said sagging Argentine bond prices pushed banking shares lower, holding back the MerVal’s climb. Argentine banks are among the biggest holders of government bonds traded on the local market.
Banco Hipotecario BHI.BA fell 4.58 percent to 0.52 pesos.
On the broad market, volume was subdued at $19.8 million and of active issues 17 advanced, 23 declined and 15 were unchanged.
U.S. stocks advanced in late trade after sliding early in the session following data showing the euro zone was in recession. But they subsequently gave up the gains and the Dow Jones industrials closed down 3.82 percent.
Sovereign bonds traded in the local over-the-counter market shed 3.3 percent on average, accumulating a 7.8 percent loss over the last three sessions as the peso-denominated par bondARPARP=RASL fell 6.3 percent.
Locally traded Argentine debt has been volatile in recent weeks due to the global financial crisis and investor worries over President Cristina Fernandez’s economic policies after a surprise move last month to nationalize the private pension fund system.
The peso weakened slightly, shedding 0.08 percent to 3.3125/3.315 per dollar ARS=RASL in formal interbank trade. The currency gained 0.45 percent to 3.365/3.37 per dollar ARSB= in informal trade between foreign exchange houses, as measured by Reuters.
Reporting by Walter Bianchi; Writing by Kevin Gray; Editing by Dan Grebler