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  • Students take part in a rally against President Nicolas Maduro's government in Caracas on Nov. 21, 2015.

    Markets are bracing themselves for the prospect of a calamitous debt default in Venezuela, which may be worse than Argentina's 2001 crisis.

  • SAO PAULO, Feb 5- Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Brazil's largest private-sector bank, has for years traded at a premium to rival Banco Bradesco SA but many investors are betting the gap will narrow amid sharply diverging outlooks from the lenders. With Brazil facing its longest recession in a century, the banks' share prices will depend on how they navigate a slew of...

  • SAO PAULO, Feb 5- U.S. power utility AES Corp, Italy's Enel and several Brazilian rivals have shown preliminary interest in buying state-controlled power distributor Centrais Elétricas de Goiás SA, a group organizing the sale and a source briefed on the plan said. According to a website created by Brazil's Eletrobras, which has a controlling stake at Celg-D,...

  • RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb 5- Brazilian government health institute Fiocruz said on Friday it had discovered for the first time active Zika virus in saliva and urine samples and would investigate the possible transmission of the mosquito-borne virus through bodily fluids. Fiocruz made the discovery after analyzing samples from two patients and carrying out a...

  • SAO PAULO/ NEW YORK, Feb 5- Gávea Investimentos Ltda, the hedge fund run by former Brazilian central bank president Arminio Fraga, is doubling down on contrarian bets on Mexico's currency and against Brazil's, a sign that disparities between Latin America's two biggest economies will grow faster. Gávea also kept bets against the currencies of Thailand, South...

  • Mosquito repellant sales boom in Brazil amid Zika scare Thursday, 4 Feb 2016 | 11:22 PM ET

    Following the detection of Zika in April, sales of repellant in Brazil rose by one-third last year, according to consumer research firm Nielsen, doubling revenue for the sector to $55.7 million. Brazil's biggest retailer, the Pao de Acucar Group, said supermarket sales of repellant were up 120 percent in the first weeks of 2016, compared to the same period a year...

  • SINGAPORE, Feb 5- Chicago wheat ticked higher on Friday on bargain-buying, but remained on track for its biggest weekly decline since late December as U.S. shipments struggle to find buyers. Soybeans rose, snapping two sessions of decline, although prices were capped by forecasts of improved weather conditions in Argentina. *Corn and soybean futures have felt...

  • BRASILIA/ SAO PAULO, Feb 4- Brazil's trade minister called for unrestricted auto trade with Mexico and Argentina on Thursday, after data showed the local automotive sector had its worst January in a dozen years. In a brief interview with Reuters, Trade Minister Armando Monteiro said he would propose free trade in vehicles and auto parts when he travels next week...

  • Carnival cancelled across Brazil Thursday, 4 Feb 2016 | 9:44 AM ET
    Members of Unidos da Tijuca Samba School during their parade at 2014 Brazilian Carnival at Sapucai Sambadrome on March 03, 2014 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    While Rio dances samba for the next few days, other cities have had to cancel carnival festivities as the recession bites.

  • Feb 3- Top U.S. airlines United and Delta have offered to re-assign certain flight crew concerned about contracting the Zika virus from routes to Latin America and the Caribbean, the companies told Reuters on Wednesday. Delta Air Lines Inc has also let flight attendants and pilots switch assignments since Jan. 17, and "a small number of crew members have swapped...

  • Feb 3- United Airlines has offered to re-assign pregnant flight attendants concerned about contracting the Zika virus from routes to Latin America and the Caribbean, according to a memo seen by Reuters. "We have immediate concern about our members' health," said Sara Nelson, international president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, when asked for...

  • SAO PAULO, Feb 3- Logistics firm Hidrovias do Brasil plans to start exporting from a new grain terminal in the Brazilian Amazon in July, serving international merchants, CEO Bruno Serapião said. Commodities traders Noble Agri and Holland's Nidera, both controlled by Chinese food giant COFCO, as well as Multigrain, a Brazilian subsidiary of Japan's Mitsui,...

  • Dallas reports sexually transmitted Zika case Wednesday, 3 Feb 2016 | 11:16 AM ET
    An Aedes Aegypti mosquito seen on a human hand in a lab of the International Training and Medical Research Training Center (CIDEIM) in Cali, Colombia February 2, 2016.

    Officials say a person who hadn't traveled got the Zika virus after having sexual contact with someone who'd been to Venezuela. NBCNews reports.

  • GENEVA/ PARIS, Feb 2- The Zika virus could spread to Africa, Asia and southern Europe, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday, as major French drugmaker Sanofi SA and others joined the race to create a vaccine. A day after Geneva- based WHO declared an international public health emergency due to Zika's association with the birth defect microcephaly in...

  • The Chilean Health Ministry says all three Zika cases reported Tuesday were contracted outside Chile. It says one person was infected while traveling in Venezuela, one in Colombia and one in Brazil. The World Health Organization says Zika is likely to spread to every country in the Americas where the Aedes aegypti is found.

  • One industry's shares try to recover from Zika Monday, 1 Feb 2016 | 12:47 PM ET
    A worker fumigates the Sambadrome ahead of Carnival celebrations in Rio de Janiero, Brazil, on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016. The operation is part of the Health Ministry's efforts to eradicate the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is thought to spread the Zika virus being blamed for causing birth defects.

    Tourism and travel-related stocks have taken a hit from worries surrounding the Zika virus.

  • SAO PAULO/ BRASILIA, Feb 1- Shares of Brazilian airline Gol soared nearly 40 percent on Monday after a newspaper reported the government is considering the end of limits on foreign ownership of domestic airlines to attract investment to the struggling sector. Last year Congress debated a proposal to lift the foreign ownership limit to 49 percent.

  • RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan 29- Brazil's state-controlled oil producer Petrobras slashed its oil and natural gas reserves 20 percent on Friday, hit by a plunge in energy prices, a heavy debt load, high costs and a corruption scandal. The bigger-than-expected cut, reported in a securities filing on Friday, highlights how the once soaring potential of big oil discoveries...

  • Jan 29- Companies and scientists are racing to create a Zika vaccine as concern grows over the mosquito-borne virus that has been linked to severe birth defects and is spreading quickly through the Americas. Brazil, the hardest-hit country, has reported around 3,700 cases of the devastating birth defect called microcephaly that are strongly suspected to be...

  • SAO PAULO— Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has been subpoenaed as part of an investigation into a suspected money laundering scheme involving an apartment he once thought of buying, the Sao Paulo state prosecutor's office said Friday. The office of prosecutor Cassio Conserino said Silva and his wife, Marisa Leticia, would be questioned...