Forbes | 11/13/2009 12:00:00 AM
Colombia to face sell-off if Uribe doesn't run
Nov 13--Colombian stocks and bonds will fall if market-friendly President Alvaro Uribe is barred by the courts from running for a third term next year, a ruling that would upset investors but create buying opportunities.
If the courts block his bid for a second re-election, investors would fret at least briefly about policy continuity and take profits on stocks and bonds that have risen this year on increased global risk appetite.
"Colombia is not a country play. It's an Uribe play," said Walter Molano, analyst at BCP Securities in Connecticut.
"Most investors see his re-election as a foregone conclusion. If they wake up to news one morning that Uribe will not be a candidate, there could be a big sell-off in Colombian financial assets," Molano said.
However, the sell-off could be short lived as investors shift focus to Colombia's list of alternative presidential candidates, most of whose policies barely differ from Uribe's.
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