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Serra’s Permanence in PSDB is Positive for Dilma and Poses Challenges for Aécio
BRAZIL POLITICS - Report 02 Oct 2013
Former Governor José Serra (PSDB-SP) has decided to remain in the PSDB.There was a possibility of Serra's going to the PPS.The national president of the PPS, Rep. Roberto Freire (SP), had offered the party to the former governor to run for president again in 2014. Freire claims that “He (Serra) c...

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Industrial Production Stagnant and Without Good Perspectives
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 02 Oct 2013
Industrial production in August was stable, causing a decline of 1.2% in the 12-month variation (Graph 1). With this, the carry-over to the third quarter reached -1.7%, meaning that for output to remain stable in the quarter, growth in September will have to be 5.1%, which is highly unlikely. In ...

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Heads-Up: ISIS Threatens Ankara
TURKEY - In Brief 02 Oct 2013
The Islamic State of Iraq and Levant or Syria (ISIS) issued a web-based threat to Ankara to re-open two border crossings, Bab-el Hava and Bab-ul Salam, by 8 October or face nationwide suicide bomb attacks.  The threat was issued on a website believed to have in the past communicated such messages...

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Uncertain Times
ARGENTINA - Report 02 Oct 2013
This report reviews some factors that are generating political and economic uncertainty for the immediate future. They are the upcoming midterm elections, the legal battle with the holdouts, the dubious 2014 Budget, and the government’s interventionist stance. Although none seems important enough...

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How the Budget Numbers Stack Up
MEXICO - Report 01 Oct 2013
Executive SummaryA series of legally binding budget deadlines, legislative calendars and partisan political calculations pose the possibility of a congressional train wreck if the administration of President Enrique Peña Nieto and the leaders of the main political parties fail to find common grou...

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2014 Budget Law Ready to be Sent to Congress
CHILE - In Brief 30 Sep 2013
President Sebastián Piñera announced yesterday the main fiscal figures of the 2014 budget proposal. Public spending budget is expected to increase 3.9 percent in real terms in 2014 while structural fiscal deficit is expected to fall to 1% of GDP in 2014. The 2014 Budget Law will be sent today to ...

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The Reform Package: Appears Decidedly Half-Empty
TURKEY - In Brief 30 Sep 2013
I defer a Market Brief on Erdogan’s Reform Package till Tuesday, because of what I stated in the Weekly Tracker:“The content of the reform initiative is not the most relevant issue about its impact on Turkey’s fractious political landscape. It is the reception by Kurds and Alevites that count her...

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Political Insights: Week of September 30
BRAZIL POLITICS - Report 30 Sep 2013
A week of intense political negotiation, as Saturday is the deadline for the creation and membership of political parties for the 2014 elections. On Tuesday, the TSE examines the creation of Rede, Marina Silva’s party. Main Topics on the October Agenda Politically, the beginning of the month of O...

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EL SALVADOR: Stiff Challenges
CENTRAL AMERICA - Report 29 Sep 2013
Executive SummaryEl Salvador’s next president won’t have an easy time of it. His major challenge, after taking office next June, will be to restoke growth, dragging along at about 2% since 2009, when real GDP declined by 3.1%. Our 2013-14 forecast points to more of the same. A key element will be...

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Weekly Tracker: Sep 29-Oct 5
TURKEY - Report 29 Sep 2013
Executive SummaryMonday is a landmark day in Turkish politics, when PM Erdogan unveils the Reform Package. Contents will not satisfy either the Kurdish or the Alevite leadership, but the masses may be more sympathetic. A strange brawl during a soccer derby appears related to Gezi Parki, proving o...

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2014 Election
BRAZIL POLITICS - Report 27 Sep 2013
Dilma Recovers Popularity and Improves her Position Ahead of the Upcoming Succession Race The most recent CNI/Ibope on evaluations of the Dilma Rousseff administration revealed that her approval (good/very good) increased six percentage points (from 31% to 37%) from July to September.The “regular...

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Fiscal Expansion Constraining Monetary Policy
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 27 Sep 2013
Executive Summary The objective of this work is to discuss the empirical evidence on the interference of fiscal policy in monetary policy. We compare various fiscal policy measures and find that the one that performs the best by far (including in comparison with the structural primary surplus, pr...

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Q3 Woes Continue in Spite of Q2 Surprises
COLOMBIA - Report 27 Sep 2013
Executive Summary Surprisingly strong Q2 GDP results were driven by fast-expanding agriculture, construction and social services, and general economic activity grew by a healthy 4.2%. The big shock was in manufacturing, which expanded by 1.2%, though leading indicators had suggested a negative re...

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Koc Tender Officially Cancelled
TURKEY - In Brief 26 Sep 2013
In the war between AKP and its alleged secularist conspiratorial nemesis Koc Group, the first blood was officially drawn today. In a Defense Procurement Committee meeting chaired by PM Erdogan, the US$1.5 billion MilGem tender (for the construction of four Navy vessels) have been canceled on acco...

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Critical Choices
UKRAINE - Forecast 25 Sep 2013
Executive Summary November will be a critical month for Ukraine. The results of the Eastern Partnership Summit will address many lingering questions. We will soon know how serious the authorities are about releasing jailed former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko; how likely Ukraine is to cooperate...