By Christine Idzelis
A Brazil-focused exchange-traded fund is surging as the country’s top two presidential candidates head for a runoff vote following Sunday’s surprisingly tight election results.
BlackRock’s iShares MSCI Brazil ETF /zigman2/quotes/208893627/composite EWZ -0.97% , which tracks Brazilian stocks, was up 9.2% in late morning Monday, FactSet data show, at last check. That brought the fund’s gains this year to more than 15%.
Brazil’s former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the leftist candidate who had shown a commanding lead in the pre-election polls, and far-right President Jair Bolsonaro are battling to lead the world’s fourth-largest democracy, according to the Associated Press. The AP reported Sunday that Bolsonaro and da Silva, who is commonly known as Lula, will compete in a runoff vote scheduled for Oct. 30 after neither candidate clinched a majority of the votes.
After 99.9% of votes were tallied Sunday in a field that included nine other candidates, Lula had 48.4% support and Bolsonaro had 43.2%, according to the AP report.
The iShares MSCI Brazil ETF, which has around $4.9 billion of assets under management, is jumping after falling 2.9% in September, FactSet data show.
The fund’s top three holdings at the end of last month were shares of metals and mining company Vale that are listed in Brazil, oil and gas producer Petroleo Brasileiro /zigman2/quotes/201811671/delayed BR:PETR4 -1.04% and financial-services firm Itau Unibanco Holding /zigman2/quotes/202383066/delayed BR:ITUB4 +0.68% , according to holdings data on BlackRock’s website.