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EMERGING MARKETS-Latam FX hit by strong dollar, stocks drop

(Recasts throughout, updates prices, adds market strategist's quote) By Aaron Saldanha April 11 (Reuters) - Latin America currencies softened on Thursday against a dollar boosted by strong U.S. economic data, while Latin American stocks slid along with their global peers, with equities in Argentina and Brazil racking up the heaviest losses.

U.S. producer prices rose by the most in five months in March, strengthening the dollar and setting the stage for Latin American currencies to weaken.

MSCI's index of Latin American currencies snapped a four-session winning run, while its Latin American stocks index fell 1.1%.

Brazil's house speaker Rodrigo Maia said pension reform that would save 1 trillion reais ($259.40 billion) could be approved in May or June. While government dialogue with Congress has been lacking, he said, it was improving.

Investors voted with their feet, however, and the real slid 0.9% on its worst day in about two weeks.

"We continue to stay on the sidelines in Brazilian assets, avoiding potential market volatility when pension reform is debated in the special committee and awaiting better entry when the committee appears likely to approve the bill," Dirk Willer, Citi Research's head of emerging market strategy, and Kenneth Lam, emerging markets FX strategist, wrote in a note.

Broad-based losses pulled Brazilian stocks 1.3%lower.

State-run oil firm Petroleo Brasileiro SA saw its common shares and preferred shares fall 1.3% and 2.7%, respectively, pressured by sliding oil prices.

Companhia Energetica de Minas Gerais-CEMIG fell 1.4%. The police raided the power firm's headquarters, saying they was investigating 40 million reais siphoned out of CEMIG.

Shares of a CEMIG unit police said was linked to the alleged scheme, Renova Energia SA, tumbled 4.9 percent.

Mexico's peso edged lower and stocks fell 0.7%.

Peso trading volumes jumped to about 180% of their average over the past week, Refinitiv Eikon data showed, around the time minutes from the Mexican central bank's March 28 meeting were released.

Financial challenges at Mexican state oil firm Pemex could threaten macroeconomic stability, said the minutes of the meeting, at which where the key rate was left at 8.25%.

"We highlight that, even though the rate decision was unanimous, one member of the board, Gerardo Esquivel, did not agree with the communiqué, which is unprecedented for Banxico," wrote strategists at Banorte Research, referring to the central bank, Banco de Mexico.

Chile's peso fell 0.3% following a dip in the price of copper, the country's top export.

Argentina's stocks fell 2% to their lowest closest level since early 2019. The peso firmed, with the central bank raising the rates payable on short-term notes.

Colombia's peso weakened 0.8%, while stocks dropped 1%. Oil firm Ecopetrol SA was pulled 2.5% lower by soft oil prices.

Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2059 GMT: Stock indexes Latest Daily % change MSCI Emerging Markets 1087.49 -0.78 MSCI LatAm 2807.44 -1.14 Brazil Bovespa 94754.70 -1.25 Mexico IPC 44580.06 -0.73 Chile IPSA 5254.48 -0.45 Argentina MerVal 31501.04 -2.03 Colombia IGBC 13155.04 -1.02 Currencies Latest Daily % change Brazil real 3.8590 -0.10 Mexico peso 18.8260 -0.08 Chile peso 665 -0.48 Colombia peso 3118.05 -0.78 Peru sol 3.298 -0.12 Argentina peso (interbank) 42.7000 0.77 (Reporting by Aaron Saldanha in Bengaluru; editing by Grant McCool)