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Colombian stocks rose for a third straight session Friday, closing at their highest level in 13 months after Colombia's largest financial holding firm, Grupo Sura (GIVSY, GRUPOSURA.BO), reported first-quarter profits that more than doubled those of the previous year.
The Colcap, which is the Colombian Stock Exchange's benchmark index, climbed 0.56% to end at 1,769.49 points, the index's highest point total since March 7, 2011.
Grupo Sura shares rose 2% to COP31,400 after the company said first-quarter profits were $99 million, a 135% increase from that quarter a year earlier. It credited the rise in income to the "good performance" of its recent acquisition of ING Groep's (ING, INGA.AE) Latin American assets.
Meanwhile, the Colombian peso ended slightly weaker at COP1,764.40 for a dollar from COP1,762.20 a day earlier, according to Set-FX. Earlier in the day, the peso had climbed to a one-month intraday high, but investors began selling pesos later in the session.
The peso is 9% stronger against the dollar this year due to a record amount of foreign direct investment. Some analysts believe Colombia's central bank may announce new intervention plans Monday to prevent further strengthening in the currency.
The yield on Colombia's peso-denominated bond due July 2024 closed at 7.101% after beginning the session at 7.084%.
-By Dan Molinski, Dow Jones Newswires; 57-310-867-6542; email@example.com