SAO PAULO, Aug 1 (Reuters) - Brazilian stocks rose on Tuesday as a batch of corporate announcements lifted shares including lender Itaú Unibanco SA and wood pulp producer Suzano Papel e Celulose SA. Suzano was the biggest gainer on Brazil's benchmark Bovespa stock index after its board approved a proposal to list shares on the Novo Mercado segment of the São Paulo Stock Exchange, which carries stricter corporate governance standards. Analysts at Banco BTG Pactual said the move could trigger gains of up to 20 percent in its share price, calling Suzano its top pick among Brazilian pulp and paper firms. In early afternoon trade, Suzano stock was up 8.1 percent, helping the Bovespa index rise 0.8 percent. Shares in Itaú Unibanco, Brazil's biggest bank, rose 3.3 percent, propelled by stronger-than-expected second-quarter net income and a drop in loan defaults.
Gains on the index were limited, however, by falling prices of commodities, which weighed on blue-chips such as state-controlled oil firm Petróleo Brasileiro SA and miner Vale SA. Currencies from commodity-heavy economies, such as Chile and Mexico, also weakened. The Brazilian real was nearly flat as traders were cautious ahead of a vote in the lower house of Congress on whether to authorize the Supreme Court to put President Michel Temer on trial for corruption charges. "The market is pricing that Temer will conclude his term and, of course, maintain the current economic Cabinet," Coinvalores brokerage head of stock trading Marco Tulli said. Any outcome that differs from that scenario would drive share prices sharply lower, he added. Traders widely expect the lower house to vote on Wednesday to block the referral of the corruption accusations to the top court. Still, the prosecutor-general's office is likely to file additional charges against the Brazilian leader in coming months, potentially delaying a pension reform, which is seen as needed to overcome the country's fiscal crisis. 1/2nL1N1KI1Q9 3/8 Yields on Brazilian interest rate futures slipped as traders increased bets on a sharp 100 basis point rate cut next month following the release of the minutes of the last central bank policy meeting.
Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 1555 GMT:
Stock indexes daily % YTD % Latest change change MSCI Emerging Markets 1068.22 0.19 23.65 MSCI LatAm 2774.18 0.81 17.57 Brazil Bovespa 66346.48 0.65 10.16 Mexico S&P/BVM IPC 51300.59 0.57 12.40 Chile IPSA 5065.32 0.01 22.02 Chile IGPA 25312.69 0 22.08 Argentina MerVal 21634.00 0.24 27.88 Colombia IGBC 10941.72 -0.13 8.03 Venezuela IBC 140863.70 1.05 344.29 Currencies daily % YTD % change change
Brazil real 3.1168 0.03 4.25 Mexico peso 17.8200 -0.07 16.41 Chile peso 652.41 -0.52 2.80 Colombia peso 2974.49 0.32 0.91 Peru sol 3.239 0.03 5.40 Argentina peso (interbank) 17.5950 0.30 -9.78 Argentina peso (parallel) 17.98 0.61 -6.45
(Reporting by Bruno Federowski; Editing by W Simon)