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Country Insights

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Political and Economic Update
TURKEY - Report 03 Sep 2017
Turkey enters autumn season with harshly enforced calm at home, but the opposition is gathering force. The short-term threats to political risk premium emanate from abroad. Tensions with Germany escalated another notch, when Turkey arrested yet another Germany couple. Berlin will have to retaliat...

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Cementing the foundations of liberal democracy
INDIA - Report 01 Sep 2017
In recent years, there has been increasing nervousness about the soundness of Indian democracy. There are concerns that democracy has become reduced to the rite of elections every five years, that India is succumbing to the problems of majoritarian bias and middle class religiosity plus nationali...

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U.S. Sanctions May Hit Debt Trading and the Economy
RUSSIA ENERGY / FINANCE - Report 01 Sep 2017
After the U.S. bill toughening sanctions on Russia passed Congress by a huge majority, President Donald Trump grudgingly signed it, in August. The law codifies existing financial and sectoral sanctions, and introduces new provisions that open the possibility of U.S. sanctions against companies in...

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What will Wang Qishan Do?
CHINA FINANCIAL - In Brief 31 Aug 2017
If the rumors are true that Wang Qishan will retire for health reasons, and will have no role, either in the Standing Committee or in a Leading Group, it would not represent, in my opinion, good news for China's economic adjustment. This will in the best of cases be a brutally difficult process a...

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The Party Congress Date is Set
CHINA FINANCIAL - In Brief 31 Aug 2017
The Party Congress has been officially set for October 18, which seems smack in the middle of the expected range. I asked one of my students to get me the previous dates, and she told me: 18th Congress: 2012.11.8 17th Congress: 2007.10.15 16th Congress: 2002.11.8 15th Congress: 1997.9.12 One piec...

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New threats, familiar dilemmas
VENEZUELA - Report 31 Aug 2017
U.S. sanctions against Venezuela aim to starve its public sector of resources but leave enough room for Venezuela to meet foreign debt obligations. Though we perceive that the risk of messy default has grown, we continue to believe that the government will go to great lengths to prevent the chaos...

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FC Otkritie, eighth largest lender, is rescued by CBR
RUSSIA ENERGY / FINANCE - In Brief 30 Aug 2017
CBR announced yesterday that it will bail out FC Otkritie, an eighth largest Russian banks by assets and until recently the largest private bank. Financial troubles of Otkritie have surged since June after ACRA, a national rating agency, rated it as BBB-. The credit rating was a notch lower than ...

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Canal Prepares for Greater Global Competition as Panama Prepares for Financial Transparency
PANAMA - Report 30 Aug 2017
In this report, we review the most recent economic data, and present two positive themes that support our medium-term forecast: initiatives to promote transparency in the financial sector, and several logistics projects in the Canal area Recent data show that service and exports sectors are ex...

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Guatemala: No Surprises, But Rising Worry
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 30 Aug 2017
The outlook for the Guatemalan economy has not changed significantly since March, when we discussed our 2017-2018 outlook. Growth continues to be moderate; support for the current account remains positive, basically due to a rise in private remittances; the fiscal situation remains under control;...

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Assessing the impact of sanctions
VENEZUELA - Report 30 Aug 2017
The 24 August 2017 batch of U.S. sanctions aims at closing the Venezuelan government’s access to new funding through operations with U.S. persons and dealings in the United States, including transactions settled through U.S. institutions, whether as a result of clearing U.S. dollar payments throu...

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No Good News, But Glimmers of Hope
CHILE - Report 29 Aug 2017 1 response
The latest national accounts were unequivocal about the sluggishness of the economy during H1; we cannot find a single sign of recovery.GDP expanded just 0.5% y/y during the first semester, making it the worst half since H2 2009. Yet there are a few signs of improved expectations. Strong domes...

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​Indonesia: Full Confidence on Independence Day
INDONESIA - Report 29 Aug 2017
Indonesian Independence Day on August 17 was celebrated with high self-confidence from the government. The celebration was marked by a variety of traditional dress from around the country, and it displayed the cultural variety this country has always enjoyed. President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) wore t...

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Some background for S&P's improvement of Hungary's BBB- outlook to positive
HUNGARY - In Brief 29 Aug 2017
Honestly, S&P's latest move to raise the outlook on Hungary's BBB- long-term credit rating to positive from stable took analysts, including us, by surprise. Previously, there was some mentioning of a potential for a step like this, but only as a possible secondary scenario.In hindsight, nonethele...

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Week of August 28
BRAZIL POLITICS - Report 28 Aug 2017
President Michel Temer travels to China to take part in the BRICS Summit and meetings with authorities and investors. The government will send the 2018 Budget to Congress by Thursday, August 31. In the Lower House, a new effort to vote on Political Reform. The Senate holds confirmation hearings f...

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Economics: Nafta Talks Off to an Opaque Start
MEXICO - Report 28 Aug 2017
The joint statement issued by Nafta countries following the first round of renegotiations contained only the vaguest generalities about what they discussed and if any progress was achieved. Stakeholders briefed on the talks were similarly circumspect, but much can be gleaned from the texts of the...