Meeting the Fiscal Target and Signals from Monetary Policy
BRAZIL ECONOMICS · Report · 03 Apr 2017

Last week the Finance Ministry announced measures to guarantee compliance with the primary deficit target in 2017; the National Monetary Council (CMN) disclosed new rules for loans from the BNDES; and the Central Bank published the latest Inflation Report, updating the projections for 2017 and 20...

Alianza Pais will Continue for Four More Years
ECUADOR · In Brief · 02 Apr 2017

The candidate from Alianza Pais, Lenin Moreno, has officially been declared the next president of Ecuador with 51.07% of votes against the candidate from the opposition, Guillermo Lasso who received the vote of 48.96% of the population. The results from the election show a highly polarized countr...

Pre-Referendum Stock Taking
TURKEY · Report · 02 Apr 2017

We consider the presidential referendum a threshold event in Turkish history. Our poll-of-polls reveals a very tight race, but based on past experience and AKP’s “institutional advantages”, we assign 60% odds to a YES victory. Nevertheless, we admit the low reliability of polls because of the ...

The economy and the political cost of reforms account for Temer’s lack of popularity
BRAZIL POLITICS · Report · 31 Mar 2017

Research conducted by the Brazilian Institute of Public Opinion and Statistics (Ibope), commissioned by the National Confederation of Industry (CNI), indicates that Michel Temer´s favorability ratings have dropped. The number of those who evaluate his presidency positively (good/great) has shrunk...

The Reserve Bank Remains Dovish Amid Political Uncertainty
SOUTH AFRICA · Report · 31 Mar 2017

The South African Reserve Bank’s monetary policy committee has once again opted to keep the benchmark interest rate at 7% and therefore the prime lending rate at 10.5%. This took place amid the latest political turmoil that is once again spearheaded by the Republic’s President, Mr Jacob Zuma.

Q4 Growth: Surprises Never End
TURKEY · Report · 31 Mar 2017

The economy grew at a better-than expected 3.5% pace in Q4, y/y, compared with the consensus and our forecasts of around 2% and 2.5%, respectively. The driver on the demand side was a whopping increase in private consumption spending, which grew by 5.7%, y/y, while the rest of the spending compo...

Corozal did not materialize… Economy continues its trend
PANAMA · Report · 31 Mar 2017

In 2016, Panama’s GDP grew 4.9%, deaccelerating for a fifth consecutive year. The leading sectors in the economy were: education services (which grew 10.9%); electricity, gas and water supply (10.6%); mining (8.4%); construction (8.3%); and financial intermediation (6.6%). On the other hand, agri...

Less Austerity, More Intelligence?
COLOMBIA · Report · 31 Mar 2017

Last week the Ministry of Finance presented a COP 7.7 trillion budgetary addition to Congress -- its first in nine years. This more than undoes the spending cut approved when the budget passed in Q4 2016. Under the label of “intelligent austerity,” the Ministry of Finance had earlier introduced a...

Jakarta Election Fever
INDONESIA · Report · 30 Mar 2017

Indonesian politics in the past few months have been heavily influenced by the gubernatorial election in Jakarta. The incumbent governor, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, famously known as "Ahok", has been challenged by Anies Baswedan. Ahok has double minority status; he is both Chinese and a Christian, w...

South Africa: A New Minister of Finance & A New Fiscal Dispensation
SOUTH AFRICA · In Brief · 30 Mar 2017 · 1 response

Malusi Gigaba is South Africa's new Minister of Finance, and his deputy is Mr Sfiso Buthelezi. Previously, Gigaba has been Minister of State Enterprises before, and in the recent past he was Minister of Home Affairs. He is a staunch Zuma supporter, and the face of new generation of ANC leaders. D...

President Zuma Strikes: Sfiso Buthelezi is new Deputy Minister of Finance
SOUTH AFRICA · In Brief · 30 Mar 2017 · 1 response

The much awaited cabinet reshuffle happened, and it was swift and far reaching. After a blistering attack by the SA Communist Party earlier today, Zuma strikes to assert his authority without concerns for politics or economics. Not only is Minister Pravin Gordhan sacked, but also a large number o...

SA Minister of Finance: Pravin Gordhan Sacked
SOUTH AFRICA · In Brief · 30 Mar 2017

It is now confirmed that Pravin Gordhan is sacked as the SA Minister of Finance. His replacement is not yet formally announced. Most likely candidates is Mr Sfiso Buthelezi as the replacement for Pravin Gordhan, and Brian Molefe is a likely Deputy Minister of Finance....

President Zuma's Reshuffle Update
SOUTH AFRICA · In Brief · 30 Mar 2017

President Zuma is reported to have sacked 9 ministers and 6 deputy ministers. All details are not out, but it is almost certain that Minister Gordhan and Deputy Minister Jonas would be amongst the 15. TV station ANN7, the Gupta Family's TV station, has just reported the news. The official preside...

President Zuma's High Risk Road
SOUTH AFRICA · In Brief · 30 Mar 2017

Earlier this evening, at around 19h00, President Zuma convened an emergency meeting of the ANC Top 6, he called a number of ministers to stand by too. This is the strongest sign so far that he may have made up his mind to take the high risk road after all. If he reshuffles, both Minister of Finan...

GUATEMALA: Moderate Growth and Stability Expected
CENTRAL AMERICA · Report · 30 Mar 2017

Guatemala experienced a year of adjustment in 2016, after the political turmoil of 2015. The new administration spent its first months negotiating a learning curve, given President Jimmy Morales’ lack of political experience. It was also a year of adjustment to a new political balance in Congres...