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24 January 2017 LatAm Currencies Enjoying a Moment of Calm, but Risks Remain (Publication Centre)

Most LatAm currencies traded higher against the USD yesterday, adding to the gains achieved after Donald Trump's inauguration last Friday. The MXN, which was the best performer during yesterday's session, was up about 0.8%; it was followed by the CLP, and the BRL. The positive performance of most LatAm currencies, especially the MXN, is related to positioning and technical factors.

23 March 2018 Brazil and Colombia to Ease Further, but Chile's Rate Cuts are Over (Publication Centre)

The COPOM meeting was the centre of attention in Brazil this week. The committee cut the main rate by 25 basis points to a new historical low of 6.50%, in line with market expectations.

30 Jan. 2015 Plunging Oil Prices Boost Chile's Consumers - Businesses Still Weak (Publication Centre)

Chile's economy is showing the first reliable signs of improvement, at last. December retail sales rose 1.9% year-over-year, up from 0.4% in November, indicating that household expenditure is starting to revive, in line with a pick-up in consumer confidence and the improving labor market.

31 August 2018 Andean Economies Remain Strong, but External Threats are Significant (Publication Centre)

Data released yesterday show that the Chilean economy had a weak start to the second half of the year.

23 Mar. 2015 Brazil's Inflation Target is Wishful Thinking for 2015 - Maybe in 2016 (Publication Centre)

The bad news just keeps coming for Brazil's economy. The mid-month CPI, the IPCA-15 index, rose 1.2% month-to-month in March. Soaring energy prices remain the key contributor to the inflation story in Brazil, pushing up the housing component by 2.8% in March, after a 2.2% increase in February.

5 January 2018 LatAm FX Started 2018 Strongly, but Risks Remain, Particularly in H1 (Publication Centre)

LatAm financial markets have performed solidly in the first sessions of the year, with most regional currencies trading more strongly against the USD.

22 August. 2016 Fiscal Problems Will be Exposed as Brazil's Political Mess Clears (Publication Centre)

Brazil's economic performance has improved marginally in recent months, with inflation falling and economic activity and sentiment data stabilizing, or even increasing modestly. The latest regional economic activity report, for instance, showed that although overall output declined again on a sequential basis in March-to-May, three of the five regions expanded.

21 November 2017 Chile's Economy Rebounded in Q3, but Politics Will Dominate the News (Publication Centre)

Incoming data confirm our view that the Chilean economy to rebound steadily in the second half of the year, with real GDP increasing 1.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, after a relatively modest 0.9% increase in Q2 and a meagre 0.1% in Q1.

21 November. 2016 Soft Chilean Data Likely Leading to Rate Cuts Next Year (Publication Centre)

Chile's central bank left rates unchanged at 3.5% last Thursday, as expected, and maintained its neutral tone. Inflation pressures are easing, economic activity remains sluggish and global risks have increased.

21 October. 2016 The BCB is Cautious, But its Inflation Fears Will Ease Soon (Publication Centre)

Brazil's monetary policy committee, the Copom, cut the Selic rate by 25bp to 14.0% in a unanimous decision, without bias, on Wednesday. This marks the start of the first easing cycle since 2012, and it arrives after 15 months with rates held at 14.25%.

5 May 2017 Brazil's Industrial Output Dropped in March, but the Trend is Rising (Publication Centre)

Wednesday's Brazilian industrial production data were worse than we expected but the details were less alarming than the headline. Output slipped 1.8% month-to-month in March, the biggest fall since August 2015, setting a low starting point for Q2.

23 January 2017 Chile's Central Bank Cuts Rates, Leaving the Door Open for More (Publication Centre)

Chile's central bank cut the country's main interest rate by 25bp to 3.25% last Thursday. The easing was expected, as the board adopted a dovish bias last month, after keeping a neutral stance for most of 2016. Last week's move, coupled with the tone of the communiqué, suggests that further easing is coming, as growth continues to disappoint and inflation pressures are easing.

5 October 2018 Brazil Heads to the Polls on Sunday a Contested Second Round is Likely (Publication Centre)

Brazil heads to the polls on Sunday, followed by an expected run-off on October 28.

9 June 2017 Inflation in Mexico will Stabilize Soon, Despite May's Ugly Headline (Publication Centre)

The Mexican inflation rate soared at the start of 2017, but this is yesterday's story; the headline will stabilize soon and will decline slowly towards the year-end. May data yesterday showed that inflation rose to 6.2%, from 5.8% in April. Prices fell 0.1% month-to-month unadjusted in May, driven mainly by lower non-core prices, which dropped by 1.3%, as a result of lower seasonal electricity tariffs.

9 May 2017 Colombian Inflation is Heading Lower, Despite the Pause in April (Publication Centre)

Colombia's disinflation since mid-2016 has been driven by easing pressures on food prices, weak demand, and the better performance of the COP. But higher regulated prices at the start of the second quarter have triggered a pause in the downward trend.

9 May 2018 Improving Economies in the Andes, Inflation is Well Under Control (Publication Centre)

March economic activity in Chile expanded by a solid 4.6% year-over-year, pointing to Q1 real GDP growth of 4.0%, the fastest pace since Q3 2013, up from 3.3% in Q4.

9 September. 2016 Political Turbulence in Mexico Won't Derail Fiscal Consolidation (Publication Centre)

Political developments are clouding the horizon in Mexico, at least temporarily. Mexico's Finance Minister Luis Videgaray, the mastermind behind President Enrique Peña Nieto's most important economic reforms, resigned on Wednesday. José Antonio Meade, a former finance chief, has been tapped to replace him.

9 December 2016 Mexico's Consumers Will Face a Tough 2017 (Publication Centre)

Mexico's economic outlook has dimmed recently, a point driven home by sentiment data released last week. Still, we think GDP growth will slow only marginally in Q4, to about 11⁄2% year-over-year. Consumers' spending likely will remain strong in the near term, thanks mainly to rising remittances from the U.S., driven by fear of policy changes under the Trump administration.

9 August 2017 Inflation in the Andes Remains in Check, But H2 Will Be Less Benign (Publication Centre)

Inflation pressures in Colombia cooled considerably last month. Saturday's CPI report showed that inflation fell to 3.4% year-over-year in July, its lowest level since 2014, from 4.0% in June.

6 Apr. 2016 Recession Risks Ease in Chile as Underlying IMACEC Stabilizes (Publication Centre)

Chile's economy appears to have gathered momentum in February with the Imacec index, a proxy for GDP, increasing 2.8% year-over-year, up from a modest 0.1% contraction in January and its fastest pace since January 2015. Activity was driven mainly by expansion in services, mining and retail commerce activities.

6 March 2017 Fed Fears Hit LatAm FX Last Week - is a Renewed Sell-off Coming? (Publication Centre)

LatAm assets have struggled in recent days as it has become clear that the Fed will hike next week. But we don't expect currencies to collapse, as domestic fundamentals are improving and the broader external outlook is relatively benign.

6 October 2017 The Mining Recovery is Driving Chile's Rebound, Will it Last? (Publication Centre)

Chile's growth dynamics were robust in August, according to the latest data. Production rose and consumption remained strong during most of Q3. Indeed, industrial output increased 5.1% year-over- year, up from an already strong 3.1% increase in July, and contrasting sharply with the 2% fall in Q2.

21 May 2018 Banxico on Hold as Inflation Falls, but the MXN is a Risk (Publication Centre)

Mexico's central bank last week left its policy rate at 7.0%, the highest level since early 2009.

21 June 2017 Q3 LatAm FX Will be Driven by Fundamentals and Commodities (Publication Centre)

LatAm investors' concerns about U.S. monetary policy expectations and the broad direction of the USD should on the back burner until the Fed hikes again, likely in September. This will leave room for country-specific drivers to take centre stage. That should support Mexico's MXN, which already has risen 14% year-to-date against the USD, erasing its losses after the US election last November.

15 Apr. 2016 Chile's Central Bank Holds Rates and Relaxes its Tightening Bias (Publication Centre)

Chile's central bank left rates unchanged on Tuesday for the fourth consecutive month, as recent data confirmed the sluggish pace of the economic recovery and inflation edges down closer to the target range. In the statement accompanying the decision, the BCCh kept its tightening bias, saying that the normalisation of monetary policy needs to continue at a data-dependent pace, in order to achieve its 3% target.

17 August. 2015 Andean Central Banks Comfortably on Hold - But FX Still a Worry (Publication Centre)

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.

17 January 2017 Peru's Growth is Solid, Will Copper Prices Offer More Support in 2017? (Publication Centre)

Yesterday's economic activity data from Peru signalled that the relatively firm business cycle continues. The monthly GDP index accelerated to 3.6% year-over-year in November, rising from 2.1% in October, but marginally below the 4.4% on average in Q3. Growth continued to be driven by mining output, including oil and gas, which rose 15% year-over- year. The opening of several new mines explains the upturn, and we expect the sector to remain key for the Peruvian economy this year.

18 July. 2016 Chile and Peru Hold Interest Rates, Hikes Will Come but not Until 2017 (Publication Centre)

Central banks in Chile and Peru kept their reference rates unchanged last week, as expected, as inflation pressures in both countries are starting to ease. But different economic outlooks are emerging. Chile's economy continues to disappoint, while Peru's is picking up. Indeed, Peru is the only country in the region with clear positive momentum.

12 October. 2016 After High Volatility in Q4, LatAm Currencies Will Strengthen in 2017 (Publication Centre)

Investors will increase their focus on exchange rates as the US presidential election and the Fed's next rate hike approach. Markets are becoming concerned that a surge in the USD could trigger another spike in LatAm currency volatility, depressing the good year- to-date performance of most local market assets.

12 July 2017 Andean Policymakers Will Meet Market Expectations Tomorrow (Publication Centre)

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.

10 September 2018 Inflation in Mexico is Edging Higher, but it Will Fall in the Fourth Quarter (Publication Centre)

The Mexican economy's brightest spot continues to be private consumption.

11 April 2018 Brazil's Inflation Fell Rapidly in March, Chile's Economy Rebounding (Publication Centre)

Data released yesterday reinforced our forecast of a further rate cut in Brazil next month.

11 December 2017 Chile's Second Round is Shaping Up to be a Nail-Biter, Piñera to Win (Publication Centre)

On December 17, voters will go to the polls for the second time in less than a month to choose Chile's next president.

18 September 2017 Andean Easing Cycle Likely is Over, Growth is Picking up, at Last (Publication Centre)

Policymakers in Chile left rates unchanged at their monetary policy meeting last week, maintaining their neutral bias.

19 December 2017 Andean Economies Closely Related by Copper, but Divided by Politics (Publication Centre)

Sebastián Piñera returns to the Presidential Palacio de la Moneda, succeeding Michelle Bachelet as president of Chile, as in 2010.

21 August 2017 Chile's Economy is Improving, but Expect Only Modest Growth in H2 (Publication Centre)

Chile's Q2 GDP report, released on Friday, confirmed that the economy gathered momentum in recent months, following an alarmingly weak start to the year.

21 August 2018 Chile's Fundamentals are Improving This Likely Will Offset External Risks (Publication Centre)

Chile's Q2 GDP report, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy gathered strength in the first half of the year, consolidating a strong recovery that started in Q3 2017.

21 December 2016 Consumption Likely Remained Firm in Mexico in Q4, But it Will Slow (Publication Centre)

Yesterday's report on October private spending in Mexico was positive, suggesting that consumption remained relatively strong at the start of Q4. Retail sales jumped 1.6% month-to-month, following a modest 0.2% drop in September. October's rebound was the biggest gain since March this year, but note that wild swings are not unusual in these data. The headline year-over-year rate rose to 9.3%, from 8.1% in September, but survey data signal to a gradual slowdown in coming months to around 5%.

21 Mar. 2016 Monetary Policy Divergence in LatAm Despite Calm in Markets (Publication Centre)

No surprises from Chile's central bank last week, after leaving rates unchanged for the third consecutive month, in the light of recent data confirming the sluggish pace of the economic recovery. In the communiqué accompanying the decision, the BCCh kept their tightening bias, signaling that rates will rise in the near term.

20 May. 2016 Chile's GDP Growth is Not Accelerating, Despite Strong Q1 (Publication Centre)

The Chilean economy improved in the first quarter, growing 2.0% year-over-year, up from 1.3% in the fourth quarter. Net trade led the improvement, with exports rising 2.1% quarter-on-quarter, thanks to the modest rise in metal prices and an increase in exports of services, especially tourism.

2 July 2018 Chile's Solid Domestic Demand Will Help Against External Jitters (Publication Centre)

Mexico's election results are not available as we go to press, but we're expecting a comfortable win for the left-wing populist candidate, AMLO.

20 March 2017 The BCCh Leaves Open a Tiny Space for Further Easing (Publication Centre)

Chile's central bank cut the policy rate 25bp last week to 3.0%, in line with consensus, amid easing inflationary pressures. The timing of the rate cut was no surprise; in January, the BCCh cut rates for the first time in more than two years, and kept a dovish bias.

2 Sept. 2015 Chile's Economic Recovery Stutters, Risks To Growth Increase (Publication Centre)

Chile's activity numbers at the beginning of Q3 were mediocre, suggesting that the economy remains sluggish. The industrial production index--comprising mining, manufacturing, and utility output--fell by 1.7% year-over-year in July, reversing a 1.6% expansion in June. A disappointing 4.5% year-over-year contraction in mining activity depressed the July headline index, following a 1.4% increase in June. The moderation in output growth was due to maintenance-related shutdowns at key processing plants, and disruptions from labor strikes, especially a three-week strike by contract workers at Codelco--the state-owned mining firm--which badly hit production.

20 August 2018 LatAm Markets Were Under Stress This Month, Will Sentiment Improve? (Publication Centre)

While we were away, EM growth prospects and risk appetite deteriorated, due mainly to rising geopolitical risks and Turkey's currency crisis.

19 Oct. 2015 Chile Follows its Peers, But the Tightening Cycle Will be Brief (Publication Centre)

Chile's central bank, the BCCh, admitted defeat in the face of the inflationary effects of the CLP's depreciation, increasing interest rates by 25bp to 3.25% last Thursday, the first hike since mid-2011. Chile is the third LatAm economy in a month to increase rates in response to currency weakness, despite sluggish economic growth.

12 Oct. 2015 Fed Minutes Bring Temporary Relief to Besieged LatAm Markets (Publication Centre)

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.

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