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Masisa Tumbles as Top Market Venezuela Devalues Currency

February 11, 2013

Masisa SA, a Chilean wood panels manufacturer that gets a quarter of its revenue from Venezuela, tumbled the most in three months on speculation that a devaluation of the country’s currency will crimp profits.

Masisa fell 3.3 percent to 54.5 pesos at 1:33 p.m. in Santiago trading after earlier falling as much as 4.2 percent in the biggest intraday loss since Oct. 19. It was the biggest decliner today on the Chile 65 stock-market index, which tracks the country’s largest companies based on an adjusted measure of market value.

Venezuela’s finance minister said Feb. 8 the government would weaken the official exchange rate by 32 percent to 6.3 bolivars per dollar. The country accounted for 25 percent of Santiago-based Masisa’s revenue during the first nine months of 2012, according to regulatory filings.

“They will have a lot of revenue in bolivars and to bring that back in dollars will cost more,” Jose Manuel Edwards, an analyst at Santiago-based broker IM Trust SA, said in a telephone interview.

Masisa operates 38 Placacentro construction-material stores in Venezuela, according to the company’s website. Masisa also has an industrial facility and owns 84,800 hectares of forests in the country.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eduardo Thomson in Santiago at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: David Papadopoulos at

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