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30 matches for " andean":
The Andean economies were in the middle of a perfect storm in the first half of the year, suffering slow recoveries, accelerating inflation and plunging commodity prices and currencies. Under these circumstances it was no surprise that Chile and Peru last week left their main interest rates on hold, close to their lowest levels in four years. The pressure coming from their plummeting currencies, however, means their next moves likely will be rate hikes, but not this year.
Colombia's economy remained resilient in July, thanks to strong domestic demand and relatively good external conditions for the country's top exports.
Policymakers in Chile left rates unchanged at their monetary policy meeting last week, maintaining their neutral bias.
Inflation and growth paths remain diverse across LatAm, but in the Andes, the broad picture is one of modest inflationary pressures and gradual economic recovery.
Chile's IMACEC economic activity index rose 2.4% year-over-year in January, down from 2.6% in December, and 3.3% on average in Q4, thanks mostly to weak mining production.
Colombian activity data released this week were relatively strong, but mostly driven by the primary sectors; consumption remains sluggish compared to previous standards.
Sebastián Piñera returns to the Presidential Palacio de la Moneda, succeeding Michelle Bachelet as president of Chile, as in 2010.
Following a challenging start to this year, Andean economic prospects are improving gradually, thanks to falling interest rates, lower inflation, relatively stable currencies and--in some cases--increased infrastructure spending.
The recent FX depreciation and falling oil prices are driving the dynamics of inflation across the Andean economies.
Recent data have confirmed that growth in the Andean economies--Colombia, Chile and Peru--faced downward pressure in Q1, but some leading indicators and recent hard data suggest that we should expect better news ahead.
The major Andean economies had a very challenging first quarter. In Colombia, the effect of the sharp fall in oil prices has become more evident in the last few months. The ISE economic activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--fell considerably during 2014, with a significant deceleration over the last half of the year.
Andean inflation remains under control, due to subpar growth, modest pressures on prices for nontradeables, and broadly stable currencies.
Brazilian inflation hit its lowest rate in almost seven years in March, while Mexico's rate is the highest since July 2009. Yet we expect Mexico to tighten policy only modestly in the near term, while Brazil will ease rapidly.
In recent weeks LatAm's currencies and stock markets, together with key commodity prices, have risen as financial markets' expectations for a rate increase by the Fed this year have faded. The COP has risen 8.5% over the last month, the MXN is up 2.5%, the CLP has climbed 1.4% and the PEN has been practically stable against the USD. The minutes of the Federal Reserve's latest meeting added strength to this market's view, showing that policymakers postponed an interest rate hike as they worried about a global slowdown, particularly China, the strong USD and the impact of the drop in stock prices.
Colombia's August inflation rate exceeded BanRep's 2-to-4% target range yet again, rising to a six-year high of 4.7%, from 4.5% in July. The signs of stabilization over the previous couple of months proved to be temporary. Core inflation has jumped above the upper bound of the inflation target too, climbing to 4.2%--the highest rate since 2009--in August from 4.0% in July, suggesting that the pass-through from the depreciating currency into consumer prices is starting to hurt. Inflation in tradables jumped in August to 5.2% from 4.7%, underscoring the hit from the COP's drop.
The truce in trade relations between the U.S. and China, agreed at the G20, is good news for LatAm, at least for now.
Recent global developments lead us to intensify our focus on trade in LatAm.
The Imacec data released on Wednesday provided further evidence that the Chilean economy grew at a decent pace in the second quarter, following a very sluggish first quarter.
Colombia's economy has continued to slow, due mainly to lagged effect of the oil price shock since mid-2014, and stubbornly high inflation, which has triggered painful monetary tightening. Modest fiscal expansion and capital inflows have helped to avoid a hard landing, but the economy is still feeling the pain of weakening domestic demand. And the twin deficits--though improving--remain a threat.
Fears of a Chinese hard landing have roiled financial and commodity markets this past year and have constrained the economic recovery of major raw material exporters in LatAm.
Peru's inflation continues to surprise to the downside, paving the way for an additional rate cut next week.
Chile's IMACEC economic activity index rose 3.9% year-over-year in January, up from 2.6% in December, and 2.9% on average in Q4, thanks to strong mining output growth and solid commercial, manufacturing and services activity.
Economic growth in Colombia and--especially-- Chile, braked in the fourth quarter and at the start of this year as the strong USD drove up imported good prices and tepid global demand weighed on exports. Colombia's January exports plunged 36.6% year-over-year, even worse than the 35% average drop in Q4.
Data released on Monday showed that Chile's external accounts remained under pressure at the start of the year, and trade tensions mean that it will be harder to finance the gap.
Data released yesterday show that the Chilean economy had a weak start to the second half of the year.
Markets are looking for the BCCh to remain on hold and the BCRP to ease on Thursday; we think they will be right. In Chile, the BCCh will hold rates because inflation pressures are absent and economic activity is stabilizing following temporary hits in Q1 and early Q2.
The Andean economies have been punished with high inflation triggered by currency depreciation and El Niño. Under these circumstances, Peru's central bank, the BCRP, admitted defeat yet again in the face of these temporary inflationary effects, increasing interest rates by 25bp to 4.0% last Thursday, the third hike in five months. Inflation in Peru remains stubbornly high, climbing to 4.4% year-over-year in December from 4.2% in November, and the upside risks remain elevated.
Data released in recent weeks have confirmed that the Andean economies retained a degree of momentum in Q4, with inflation well under con trol.
Andean economies are gathering strength...while larger countries are facing mounting risks
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