NEW YORK, Feb 13 (Reuters) - Latin American stocks traded in the United States rose on Thursday after local shares touched a new 7-month high as Brazil's finance minister quashed reports the country would tax equity purchases by foreigners.
Brazilian Finance Minister Guido Mantega ruled out taxing foreign direct investment despite reports to the contrary and said foreign investors remain welcome even as President Dilma Rousseff slammed rich nations for unleashing a "tsunami" of cheap money that was causing the real to appreciate.
Itau Unibanco, Brazil's largest non-government bank, rose 4.3 percent to $21.70. Vale SA, the world's largest iron ore producer, rose 2 percent to $25.63.
The BNY Mellon index of leading American Depositary Receipts rose 1.1 percent, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index added 0.6 percent.
In the Latin American arena, shares of Argentine energy company YPF, controlled by Spain's Repsol, shot up 12.4 percent to $29.49 after President Cristina Fernandez announced no new measures affecting the company.
Fernandez was widely expected to announce steps against the company, which has faced intense government pressure in recent weeks to boost its production of oil and natural gas.
The BNY Mellon index of leading Latin American ADRs rose 1.7 percent.
The U.S.-traded shares of Research in Motion fell sharply on Thursday on concerns about shipments of its BlackBerry this quarter that may prompt it to offer an even bleaker outlook for its flagship smartphone.
The shares of Research In Motion dropped 4.1 percent to $13.58 after the warning from an influential analyst. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek wrote in a note to clients that the latest version of the smartphone has failed to impress U.S. consumers.
The U.S. stocks' advance reversed declines from the previous session after some positive data on the labor market and solid monthly sales from retailers encouraged buying.
Stocks also got a lift as newly available cheap cash from the European Central Bank helped some sovereign bond yields to fall and further allayed default risks.
Barclays rose 3.1 percent to $16.05. It was one of the strongest performers in a solid showing from European financial stocks.
The BNY Mellon index of leading European ADRs rose 1.2 percent. The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top shares closed up 1.1 percent at 1,086.72.
French utility Veolia Environnement said it was in exclusive talks with a possible buyer for its stake in a transport joint venture, raising hopes it will deliver plans to sell assets and cut debt despite talk of boardroom divisions.
The company's U.S.-listed shares rose 15.6 percent to $14.02.
Reporting by Edward Krudy; Editing by Jan Paschal