Colombia stocks were hammered Monday as global risk aversion intensified, while the peso plunged to its weakest level this year after the central bank said a forex intervention tool to control volatility won’t begin for another two weeks.
The Colcap index, considered the Colombian Stock Exchange’s benchmark index, fell 2.1% to close at 1,550.95 points. The index is down 15% this year.
Local oil shares performed the worst as investors watched international crude-oil prices fall to their weakest since September of last year, around $77 a barrel. Shares of Pacific Rubiales, a Canada-based firm whose shares trade in Toronto as well as Bogota, fell 6.5% to 38,500 Colombian pesos, its lowest price in more than 16 months.
Shares of state-controlled Ecopetrol, which is mostly controlled by the government, fell 2.7% to COP3,755.
The Colombian peso, meanwhile, fell 1.5% to COP1,960.30, its weakest price of 2011 as global investors dumped riskier assets.
Colombia’s central bank Friday said it would auction $200 million in the spot market when the peso’s exchange rate moved more than 2% up or down from its 10-day average, and Monday’s trading action would have triggered such an auction. But early Monday morning, the bank sent an addendum to its statement that said such auctions wouldn’t begin until Oct. 14.