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Country Insights

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The Benefit of the Doubt
ARGENTINA - Report 11 Dec 2013
Executive Summary We wondered before whether the recent appointments suggested a change in economic policy or not. The departure of former Interior Trade Secretary Guillermo Moreno and the appointment of Jorge Capitanich as Chief of Cabinet suggested the possibility of a substantial change. After...

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The Central Bank’s Next Move
MEXICO - Report 10 Dec 2013
Executive Summary Mexico’s monetary authority decided last week to leave its TIIE interbank lending rate at 3.5%. Banco de México said it based its decision on the idea that inflation would remain near 3.5% for the balance of the current year and throughout 2014, and then trend lower until inters...

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Growth: Resilient, But Still Unbalanced
TURKEY - Report 10 Dec 2013
Turkish GDP expanded by 4.4% in Q3, y/y, as in the previous quarter, which was better than the consensus as well as our even softer forecast of some 3.5%. The working day and seasonally-adjusted growth was 0.9%, q/q; the latter is now running at a 4-quarter rolling 1.1%, or an annualized rate of ...

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The Final Touches on Energy Reform
MEXICO - Report 10 Dec 2013
Executive Summary After the Party of the PRD abandoned reform talks, the PAN and PRI began to toughen their respective negotiating positions as the political and time constraints that accompany the very final days of the regular session of Congress provide greater incentives to bargain all the mo...

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Our take on the December 8 Elections
VENEZUELA - Report 10 Dec 2013
Winners and losers Nicolas Maduro and PSUV are clear winners in the December 8 municipal elections. They have good reasons to celebrate even if the joy was not complete. According to the National Electoral Council, PSUV led the national vote count by a 6.5 percent margin over the opposition coali...

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Strong Headline, Weak Composition
TURKEY - In Brief 10 Dec 2013
Turkish GDP growth was 4.4% in Q3, y/y, which was higher than forecasts (notably our softer forecast), but composition, though improved over a quarter ago, still leaves a lot to be desired. Growth appears to be driven by private consumption and stock build up, with net exports shaving off some 2....

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Ergenekon convict released, case unraveling
TURKEY - In Brief 09 Dec 2013
Ergenekon convict, journalist and CHP Izmir deputy Mr. Mustafa Balbay was released from an Ankara correctional facility today, as a lower court agreed with the Constitutional Court that his right to a free and fair trial had been violated. In the last Weekly Tracker I had bet against his release,...

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Confused Reactions to a Worsening Scenario
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 09 Dec 2013
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The GDP result for the third quarter put paid to optimism regarding Brazilian growth. Not only have the perspectives worsened for 2013; the outlook is now more likely for mediocre growth in 2014. If we take stock prices as a leading indicator of growth, they point to acceleratio...

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The Current Account Deficit and Fiscal Policy
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 09 Dec 2013
Between December 2012 and the end of last October, the current account deficit rose from US$ 54.2 billion, or 2.4% of GDP, to US$ 82.2 billion, or 3.7% of GDP (Graph 1). The worsening of the current accounts closely follows the decline of the trade balance, which are near zero and are only not wo...

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Mandela’s Macroeconomic Policy Legacy Persists
SOUTH AFRICA - Report 09 Dec 2013
The passing of new South Africa’s founding president, Nelson Mandela, affectionately known as Madiba, is yet another remarkable moment in the country’s young democratic dispensation. Once again, the nation has arisen to defy all predictions of chaos and negativity – instead unifying across all ra...

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Mandela’s Macroeconomic Policy Legacy Persists
SOUTH AFRICA - In Brief 09 Dec 2013
The passing of new South Africa’s founding president, Nelson Mandela, affectionately known as Madiba, is yet another remarkable moment in the country’s young democratic dispensation. Once again, the nation has arisen to defy all predictions of chaos and negativity-instead unifying across all raci...

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A Bold Proposal for The Energy Reform
MEXICO - In Brief 08 Dec 2013 1 response
The long wait is over. PAN and PRI have presented a draft of the energy reform that is currently being discussed in the Senate, where the debate is expected to continue until Monday, before it passes to the Chamber of Deputies. It is a bold proposal that allows for private investment in power pro...

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Weekly Tracker: December 8-14
TURKEY - Report 08 Dec 2013
Executive Summary Last Monday AKP extended an olive branch to the Gulen Church by delaying the closure of private tutoring schools for two years. This gesture may reduce the “headline” risk, but mutual sniping and harping continues, suggesting a permanent rift. There are very few election polls, ...

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A New Leading Indicator of Economic Activity
BRAZIL ECONOMICS - Report 06 Dec 2013
Executive Summary In this report, we present a new leading indicator of economic activity in Brazil. Its most important characteristic is to forecast the turning points of economic cycles. Our methodology follows that of the OECD. In constructing our indicator, we started with 52 candidate variab...

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In Bad Company
PERU - Report 06 Dec 2013
Executive Summary New Prime Minister Cesar Villanueva, quite successful as president of the San Martin region at eradicating coca leaf crops, has been lauded for his hands-on approach to governance. That will be a refreshing change, as Villanueva’s predecessor seemed uncomfortable with decision-m...