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201 matches for " private consumption":
Private consumption remains resilient in Brazil and recent data suggest that growth will continue over the coming months.
Data released on Friday confirmed that Colombian activity lost momentum in Q4, following an impressive performance in late Q2 and Q3. Retail sales rose 4.4% in November, down from 7.4% in October and 8.3% in Q3.
The value of Japanese retail sales bounced back strongly in December, rising 0.9% month-on-month, after a 1.1% drop in November.
Japan's labour cash earnings rose by 1.5% year-over- year in July, a strong result in the Japanese context, if it hadn't been preceded by the 3.6% leap in June.
Korea's economy is shaping up largely in line with our expectations for the second quarter, with private consumption recovering, but exports and investment tanking.
Korean real GDP growth rebounded to 1.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, from 0.6% in Q2. The main driver was exports, with government consumption also popping, and private consumption was a little faster than we were expecting.
Before this week's earthquake, the resilience of Mexico's economy in the face of a volatile and challenging global backdrop owed much to the strength of domestic demand, especially private consumption.
Korean GDP contracted by 1.4% quarter-on- quarter in Q1, erasing the 1.3% jump at the end of last year. The pullback was sharper than we expected, with the cliff-edge drop in private consumption, in particular, catching us by surprise.
It is becoming increasingly safe to say that any bounce in private consumption following the end of Japan's state of emergency will be muted and difficult to sustain.
Recent economic indicators in Mexico have been mixed, distorted by temporary factors, including the effect of the natural disasters in late Q3. Private consumption has lost some momentum, hit by the lagged effect of high interest rates and inflation, as well as the earthquakes.
Yesterday's economic data in Brazil suggest that retailers suffered in the second quarter, hit by the effect of the truckers' strike, but private consumption remains somewhat resilient.
Japan's GDP growth came roaring back in Q2, thanks to a strong rebound in private consumption, and an acceleration in business capex.
Data released yesterday in Brazil are consistent with our view that private consumption will continue to drive the recovery over the second half, offsetting the ongoing weakness in private investment.
Japan's Q2 GDP was driven by the twin pillars of private consumption and capex.
Japanese domestic demand probably strengthened in Q2, with both private consumption and fixed investment accelerating. Trade and inventories are the key swing components for GDP growth.
We remain negative about the medium-term growth prospects of the Mexican economy.
Korean GDP unexpectedly declined in Q4, for the first time since the financial crisis, falling 0.2% quarter-on-quarter after a 1.5% jump in Q3.
Argentina's Q4 GDP report, released last week, underscored the severity of the recession, due to the currency crisis and the subsequent tighter fiscal and monetary policies.
Mexican policymakers likely will stick to the script tomorrow and vote by a majority to cut the main rate by 50bp to 5.00%, which would be its lowest level since late 2016.
Korea's preliminary Q4 GDP report was stronger than nearly all forecasters, including ourselves, expected.
High inflation and interest rates, coupled with increasing uncertainty, both economic and political, put Mexican consumption under strain last year.
Policymakers and governments are gradually deploying major fiscal and monetary policy measures to ease the hit from Covid-19 and the related financial crisis.
Mexico's economy slowed marginally in Q4, due mainly to the challenging external environment, but the domestic economy remains relatively healthy. Real GDP rose 0.5% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, following a 0.8% solid expansion in Q3. Year-over-year growth dipped to 2.5% from 2.8%.
Korea's preliminary GDP report for Q3 will be released tomorrow.
Mexican policymakers yesterday voted unanimously to cut the policy rate by 50bp to 5.00%, the lowest level since late 2016.
Some normality has returned in India, more than three weeks from the end of the nationwide lockdown and the start of "Unlock 1.0" on June 1.
Brazil's external accounts are well under control, despite the wider deficit in January, mainly driven by seasonal deterioration on the trade account.
All the evidence indicates that growth in Mexican consumers' spending is slowing, despite the better- than-expected November retail sales numbers, released yesterday.
The early damage in India from Covid-19 and the nationwide lockdown likely was significant enough to hammer the GDP report for the first quarter, due tomorrow.
Recent polls in Argentina suggest that Alberto Fernández, from the opposition platform Frente de Todos, has comfortably beaten Mauricio Macri, to become Argentina's president.
China's Q2 real GDP growth officially slowed to 6.2% year-over-year, from 6.4% in Q1, which already matched the trough in the financial crisis.
Retail sales in Mexico fell in Q4, but we think households' spending will continue to contribute to GDP growth in the first quarter, at the margin.
Data last week confirmed that Peru's economic growth slowed sharply in the first half of the year, due to the damaging effects of the global trade war hitting exports.
Brazil's central bank is finally decisively facing its demon, persistently high inflation. The eight-member policy board, known as Copom, decided unanimously on Wednesday to increase the Selic rate by 50bp to 12.25%, the highest level in more than three years, in line with the consensus.
Japan's all-industry activity index dropped by 3.8% month-on-month in March, worse than the 0.7% slip in February.
The BRL remains under severe stress, despite renewed signals of a sustained economic recovery and strengthening expectations that the end of the monetary easing cycle is near.
Korea's GDP growth in Q3 was a miss. Quarter- on-quarter growth was unchanged at 0.6%, below the consensus for a 0.8% rise.
Argentina's Recovery Continues, but the Rebound is Facing Setbacks
The Brazilian Central Bank's policy board-- Copom--voted unanimously on Wednesday to cut the Selic rate by 50bp to 6.0%.
Japan's Tankan survey for Q2 was unsurprisingly grim, given the devastation caused by the near- global lockdown in the first half of the quarter, and the nationwide state of emergency that enveloped April and May.
Data on Friday showed that the downward trend in Brazil's unemployment continued into this year. The unadjusted unemployment rate fell to 11.2% in January, slightly below the consensus, and down from 12.0% in January last year.
GDP growth currently is subdued by historical standards, but at least it is not debt-fuelled.
Data released last week confirm that the Argentinian economy finally is stabilizing.
Italy's economy is still bumping along the bottom, after emerging from recession in the middle of last year.
The Chilean economy was emerging in early Q1 from the self-inflicted shock from the social unrest in October, but the upturn was interrupted in early- March by the restrictive measures introduced to contain Covid-19.
Japan's economy contracted by 0.9% quarter-on- quarter in Q1, following a downwardly-revised 1.9% plunge in the previous quarter.
Chile's Q4 GDP report, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy accelerated at the end of last year, supported by rising capex and solid consumption.
Chile's Q3 GDP report, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy gathered speed in the third quarter, but this is now in the rearview mirror.
Japanese CPI inflation jumped to 0.7% in August from 0.4% in July. The ris e in prices over the last year, however, was mainly driven by food and energy.
Banxico cut its policy rate by 25bp to 7.25% yesterday, as was widely expected, following similar moves in August, September and November.
Japan's February trade data were a shocker, but not for the reasons we expected, given the signal from the Chinese numbers.
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.
The BoJ left policy unchanged yesterday, but we noted some significant additions and modifications in the statement and the press conference.
High interest rates and inflation, coupled with increasing uncertainty, put Mexican consumption under strain last year.
On the face of it, Japanese GDP came thumping home in Q1, rising 0.5% quarter-on-quarter, after the 0.4% increase in Q4.
We doubt that this week will see the MPC joining the list of other major central banks that have abandoned plans to raise interest rates this year.
The Andean economies haven't been immune to the turmoil roiling the global economy in the past few weeks.
The picture for Korean quarterly real GDP growth in Q4 was unchanged in the final reading, published yesterday, showing a contraction of 0.2%, after the 1.4% jump in Q3.
Chile's Q1 GDP report, released yesterday, confirmed that the economy weakened sharply at the beginning of the year, due mainly to temporary shocks, including adverse weather conditions.
The coronavirus pandemic is wreaking havoc in Brazil.
Mexico's trade balance shrank slightly last year, to USD11B, from USD13B in 2016. The main driver was a big swing in the non- energy balance, to a record USD8.0B surplus, following a USD0.4B deficit in 2016.
The rapid escalation of Covid-19 cases in Korea in recent weeks has broadened the likely damage to the economy this quarter.
Chile's economy started the third quarter decently, after taking a series of hits, including low commodity prices and the slowdown of the global economy.
Chile's near-term economic outlook is still negative, but clouds have been gradually dispersing since late Q4, due mostly to better news on the global trade front, China's improving economic prospects, and rising copper prices.
Recent economic indicators in Mexico have been terrible. The worst of the recession seems to be over, but recent hard data have underscored the severity of the shock and made it clear that the recovery has a long way to go.
We are sticking to our call for a weak first half in Japan, despite likely upgrades to Q1 GDP on Monday.
Economic activity is slowing in Colombia. The ISE activity index--a monthly proxy for GDP--rose only 0.6% year-over-year in April, down from 2.3% in March, and we expect it to rise at this pace over the coming months. During the first quarter, the index rose at an average year-over-year rate of 3.0%.
Headline GDP growth in Korea was revised down, to a seasonally-adjusted 0.6% quarter-on-quarter in Q2, from 0.7% in the preliminary report.
We've always said that China's first weapon, should the trade war escalate, is to do nothing and allow the RMB to depreciate.
Argentina's economy was improving late last year, albeit slowing at the margin, according to the latest published indicators. GDP data confirmed that the revival continued during most of Q4, with the economy growing 0.4% month-to-month in November.
The economic calendar in Mexico was relatively quiet over Christmas, and broadly conformed to our expectations of poor economic activity in Q4.
India's PMIs for October were grim, indicating minimal carry-over of energy from the third quarter rebound.
Japan's services sector PMI last week was disappointing.
The recent slowdown in labour cash earnings growth in Japan halted in September.
Japan's average monthly labour earnings growth tumbled to 0.9% year-over-year in August, from 1.6% in July. This is not a disaster.
In Friday's Monitor we analysed the draft Japanese budget, as reported by Bloomberg. We suggested that the GDP bang-for-government-expenditure- buck is likely to be less than that implied by the authorities' forecasts.
Labour cash earnings in Japan ostensibly started the year strongly, jumping by 1.5% year-over-year in January, much better than December's 0.2% slip.
In our Friday Monitor, we came to the conclusion that prescriptions arising from Modern Money Theory have been designed primarily with the U.S. in mind.
Economic growth in Chile slowed in Q1, despite a relatively strong end to the quarter, and the chances of an accelerating recovery remains disappointingly low, due to both global and domestic headwinds.
Yesterday's Nikkei services PMI report completed Japan's set of surveys for the fourth quarter of 2018.
China's FX reserves data pointed to an about-turn in net capital flows in May, with capital leaving the country again after two months of net inflows, and a current account deficit in Q1.
Consumer sentiment in Mexico continues to improve, consistent with tailwinds from the relatively strong labour market and the president's rising approval ratings.
We've been surprised by the fast rate of Japanese GDP growth in the first half, though the Q1 pop merely was due to a plunge in imports.
The outlook for Argentina is gradually improving, after a long and painful recession.
Japan is one of the countries most exposed to economic damage from the coronavirus.
Colombia's GDP report, released last week, confirmed that it was the fastest growing economy in LatAm and everything suggests that it likely will lead the ranking again this year.
Yesterday's first estimate of full-year 2019 GDP in Mexico confirmed that growth was extremely poor, due to domestic and external shocks.
Japan's June retail sales data add to the run of numbers suggesting a strong rebound in real GDP growth in Q2, after the 0.2% contraction in activity in Q1.
President Trump's volatile diplomatic style is one of the biggest risks facing the Mexican economy in the near term, as we have discussed in previous Monitors.
Friday's euro area inflation reported capped a difficult week for EZ bondholders, although most of the damage was done beforehand by the advance German data.
While we were out, data released in Mexico added to our downbeat view of the economy in the near term, supporting our base case for interest rate cuts in the near future.
Brazil's current account deficit is stabilizing following an substantial narrowing since early 2015, thanks to the deep recession.
Chile's stronger-than-expected industrial production report for December, and less-ugly-than- feared retail sales numbers, confirmed that the hit from the Q4 social unrest on economic activity is disappearing.
China's Caixin manufacturing PMI doused hopes of turning over a January new leaf; it dropped to 49.7 in November, from 50.2 in December.
Yesterday's BoJ statement, outlook and press conference raised our conviction on two key aspects of the policy outlook.
The virus outbreak has been relatively limited so far in Argentina, with 820 confirmed cases, but the numbers are rising rapidly.
The news-flow in the Eurozone was almost unequivocally bad over the summer.
Data last Friday showed Japan's labour market trends deteriorating.
Wednesday's industrial production report in Brazil was terrible, despite overshooting market expectations.
The Fed's unscheduled 50bp cut on Tuesday opens up some space for Asian central banks to follow suit.
The Brazilian economy has been recovering at a decent pace in recent months. The labor market is on the mend, with the unemploymen t rate falling rapidly to 12.5% in August from 14% at the end of Q1.
India's GDP report for the fourth quarter surprised to the upside, with the economy growing by 4.7% year-over-year, against the Bloomberg median forecast of 4.5%.
In yesterday's Monitor we suggested that China's profits surge has been party dependent on developers' risky debt issuance practices.
The Japanese unemployment rate fell again in September, to 2.3% from 2.4%. In the same vein, the job-to-applicant ratio rose to 1.64, from 1.63.
India's consensus-beating GDP report for the first quarter wasn't much to write home about.
We were expecting the pandemic in the Andes to reach a plateau over the coming weeks, given the quick response of regional governments to fight the virus.
Japan's July adjusted trade surplus rebounded to ¥337.4B from ¥87.3B in June, far above consensus. On our seasonal adjustment, the rebound is slightly smaller but only because we saw less of a drop in June.
The U.S. Commerce Department on Tuesday released a list of Chinese imports, with an annual value of $200B, on which it is threatening to impose a 10% tariff, after a two-month consultation period.
China's Q2 official GDP growth, to be released on Monday, likely slowed to 6.2% year-over-year, from 6.4% in Q1.
China's money and credit data for February were reassuring, at least when compared with the doomsday scenario painted, so far, by other key indicators for last month.
Chinese monetary conditions show signs of a temporary stabilisation. M2 growth picked up to 9.1% year-over-year in November from 8.8% in October, though largely as a correction for understated growth in recent months.
The PBoC will find itself between a rock and a hard place in the coming months, as CPI inflation creeps further up towards its 3% target but PPI deflation deepens.
China's unadjusted trade surplus collapsed in February, to just $4.1B, from $39.2B in January.
Friday's data force us to walk back our recession call for Germany. The seasonally adjusted trade surplus rose in September, to €19.2B from €18.7B in August, lifted by a 1.5% month-to-month jump in exports, and the previous months' numbers were revised up significantly.
Chinese exports grew by just 5.5% in dollar terms year-over-year in August, down from 7.2% in July. Export growth continues to trend down, with a rise of just 0.2% in RMB terms in the three months to August compared to the previous three months, significantly slower than the 4.8% jump at the p eak in January.
The ongoing weakness in DM has been a feature of the global landscape over the last year.
Financial assets of all stripes are, by most metrics, expensive as we head into year-end, but for some markets, valuations matter less than in others. The market for non-financial corporate bonds in the euro area is a case in point.
The political situation in Spain remains an odd example of how complete gridlock can be a source of relative stability.
Brazil's retail sales data undershot consensus in August, falling by 0.5% after four straight gains. But we think this merely a temporary softening, following the strong performance in recent months.
Brazil's outlook is still improving at the margin, as positive economic signals mix with relatively encouraging political news.
PM Abe last week asked the cabinet to put together a package of measures in a 15-month budget aimed at bolstering GDP growth through productivity enhancement, in addition to the shorter-term goal of disaster recovery.
GDP growth in Japan surprised to the upside in the second quarter, although the preliminary headline arguably flattered the economy's actual performance.
Next week is a big one for China. The five yearly Party Congress opens on Wednesday, and on Thursday, the monthly raft of activity data is published, along with Q3 GDP.
Mexico's February industrial production report was weaker than markets expected. Output expanded by 0.7% year-over-year, below the consensus, 1.2%, and slowing from 0.9% in January.
This has been a very complicated week for LatAm policymakers, who are particularly uneasy about the performance of the FX market.
The border security agreement between the U.S. and Mexico has strengthened hopes that the Sino- U.S. trade war will end soon.
Bond investors in Italy voted with their feet on Friday with news that the government has agreed a 2019 budget deficit of 2.4%.
Banxico's Quarterly Inflation Report--QIR--for Q2 2017, published this week, confirmed that the central bank has become more upbeat about the economic recovery and the outlook for inflation. Banxico believes that the balance of risks to inflation and growth are neutral.
Brazil's economic activity data have disappointed in recent months, firming expectations that the Q1 GDP report will show another relatively meagre expansion.
Yesterday's first estimate of Q1 GDP in Mexico confirmed that growth was under severe pressure at the start of the year.
Brazil's GDP growth slowed to just 0.1% quarter- on-quarter in Q4, from a downwardly-revised 0.5% in Q3.
Japan's industrial production data for May carried more evidence that the economy is getting a lift--at least temporarily--from the front-loading of activity ahead of the scheduled sales tax increase in October.
Data released in recent days have started to reveal a story of horror and misery in the Brazilian economy.
Japan's GDP growth was revised up, to 0.4% quarter-on-quarter in Q3, from 0.1% in the preliminary reading.
Japan's wage growth surprised us with a jump to 2.0% year-over-year in December, up from 1.5% in November.
Wage growth in Japan accelerated to a six-month high in December, inching up to 1.8% year-over-year, from November's 1.7%.
Recent economic indicators in Mexico have been relatively positive.
China's trade surplus bounced back strongly in May, rising to $40.1B on our adjustment, from $35.7B previously.
Mexico's latest forward-looking indicators are showing tentative signs of stabilisation in the wake of recent evidence that growth slowed quicker than markets have been expecting.
Inflation in Mexico fell significantly in September. Data yesterday showed that the CPI rose just 0.3% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 6.4% from 6.7% in August, its highest level in 16 years.
This week real data in Brazil supported the idea that the worst of the recession is likely over, but a V-shaped rebound is not in the cards.
China's trade balance flipped to an unadjusted deficit of $7.1B in the first two months of the year, from a $47.2B surplus in December.
It was no surprise that Banxico cut its policy rate by 25bp to 7.00% yesterday, following similar moves in August, September, November and December.
One critical point emerged from last week's otherwise uneventful BoJ meeting: Governor Kuroda said that the BoJ might "adjust" rates before hitting the 2% inflation target.
Incoming activity data from Colombia over the past quarter have been surprisingly strong, despite many domestic and external threats.
Brazil's consumer resilience in Q3 continued to November, but retail sales undershot market expectations, suggesting that the sector is not yet accelerating and that downside risks remain.
The Japanese GDP report yesterday contained substantial revisions to Q4. We had expected the Q1 contraction, but the revisions recast the health of the recovery, making the domestic demand performance look much less impressive recently, with the economy struggling since the burst of growth in the first half last year.
Evidence of accelerating economic activity in Colombia continues to mount, in stark contrast with its regional peers and DM economies.
Japanese GDP growth in the third quarter corrected the imbalances of the second. Domestic demand took a breather after unsustainable growth in Q2, while net exports rebounded.
Growth in new EZ car sales slipped last month, following a strong start to the year. New registrations rose 4.4% year-over-year in February, slowing from a 8.7% rise in January.
Yesterday's data in the EZ provided a little more evidence on what happened in Q1.
Economic data released on Wednesday underscored that Brazil was struggling at the end of the first quarter, strengthening our case that Q1 GDP fell 0.2% quarter-on-quarter, the first contraction since Q4 2016.
The Monetary Policy Board of the Bank of Korea voted yesterday to lower its policy base rate to 1.25%, from 1.50%.
Governor Kuroda has sounded increasingly dovish recently.
China's data on Monday were beyond dire, leading to a dramatic downward revision of our already grim Q1 GDP forecasts for the country.
Data released on Friday confirmed an appalling end to the first quarter for the Brazilian and Colombian economies. In Brazil, the March IBC-Br, a monthly proxy for GDP, plunged 5.9% month-to-month, close to expectations.
We've continuously warned that Japan's national accounts weren't sitting easily with the underlying signals from survey data, and monetary conditions, through last year.
Economic data in Brazil over the second quarter were relatively positive, and June reports released in recent weeks, coupled with leading indicators for July, are encouraging.
Manufacturing in the EZ was held above water by Ireland at the end of Q3.
Colombia's economic activity surprised to the upside in February, despite the challenging domestic environment. Private spending rose more than expected, but leading indicators suggest that household consumption will remain weak in Q2. Retail sales jumped 4.6% year-over-year in February, up from a 2.1% increase in January, and the fastest pace since August 2015.
Economic activity remains under severe strain in the Andes.
Colombia's July activity numbers, released on Friday, portrayed still-strong retail sales and a reviving manufacturing sector, with both indicators stronger than expected.
Data released yesterday showed that gross fixed investment in Mexico started Q4 on a decent note, increasing on the back of healthy purchases of imported machinery and equipment and construction spending.
Brazil's recession carried over into the middle of Q2, but with diminishing intensity in some economic sectors.
Brazil's retail sales improved at the start of the second quarter, increasing 0.5% month-to-month in April, partially reversing the 0.9% contraction in March. But the details were less upbeat than the headline.
Upbeat survey data, a competitive MXN, and the strong U.S. manufacturing sector indicate that Mexican industry should be rebounding.
Japan's 0.3% quarter-on quarter increase in Q4 GDP was disappointing, on the face of it, after a downwardly-revised 0.7% fall in Q3.
Soft September data in Germany and Italy suggest that today's industrial production report in the Eurozone will be poor. Our first chart shows that data from the major EZ economies point to a 0.8% month-to- month fall in September.
Hard data for Brazil and Mexico, released last week, support the case for further interest rate cuts.
Brazil's industrial sector keeps losing momentum, despite interest rates at record lows and improving confidence.
Mexican policymakers stuck to the script yesterday and voted unanimously to cut the main rate by 50bp to 5.50%, its lowest level in more than three years.
The Chinese activity data published yesterday were much weaker than expected; growth rates fell resoundingly. Did analysts really get it wrong, or is this just another example of erratic Chinese data?
The IBC-Br index, a monthly proxy for Brazil's GDP--rose 0.5% month-to-month in November, pushing the year-over-year rate down to 2.8%, from an upwardly-revised 3.1% in October.
Brazil's consumer sluggishness in Q3 and early Q4 eased in November.
Yesterday's second Q3 GDP estimate confirmed that the EZ economy expanded by 0.2% quarter-on- quarter in Q3, the same pace as in Q2, leaving the year-over-year rate unchanged at 1.2%.
China's main activity data for October disappointed across the board, strengthening our conviction that the PBoC probably isn't quite done with easing this year.
The two biggest economies in the region have taken divergent paths in recent months, with the economic recovery strengthening in Brazil, but slowing sharply in Mexico.
Financial markets and economic data don't always go hand-in-hand, but it is rare to find the divergence presently on display in Italy.
Japan's GDP likely dropped by 1.1% quarter- on-quarter in the first quarter, even from the favourable Q4 base, when it fell by 1.8%.
Brazil's recession has been severe, triggered by the downturn in the commodity cycle, which revealed the underlying structural weaknesses in the economy. This set off an acute shock in domestic demand, but it has bottomed in recent months and we now expect a gradual recovery to emerge.
This week's economic activity data for Brazil have been upbeat, indicating that the economy is recovering after a recession in the first half of 2014, but at a very gradual pace.
The tumultuous political and economic crises in Brazil continue to feed off each other, grabbing most of the LatAm headlines. Sentiment will remain depressed, and volatility and uncertainty will persist, hampering any real signs of stabilization in the near-term. The Pacific Alliance countries, by contrast, managed to grow at relatively solid rates during the first half of this year, after absorbing the hit from falling commodity prices.
Industrial data released this week showed that the Mexican economy stumbled during the second quarter. Private consumption, however, continues to rise, albeit at a more modest pace than in recent months. The ANTAD same store sales survey rose 5.3% year-over-year in June, up from 2.8% in May, but this is misleading.
In our daily Monitors we've talked about the four paths that we see for the Chinese economy over the medium-to-long term. First, China could make history and actively transition to private consumption-led growth.
Retail sales data released yesterday for Brazil confirmed that weakness in private consumption remains a key challenge for the economy. Retail sales plunged 0.9% month-on-month in May, equivalent to a 4.5% fall year-over-year, the lowest rate since late 2003. On a quarterly basis, sales are headed for a 2% contraction in Q2, pointing to a -0.5% GDP contribution from consumer spending.
Private consumption in Japan will take time to recover, even if some semblance of normality returns from this month.
Chile's April retail sales data, released on Monday, show that private consumption started the second quarter on a solid footing. Sales rose 3.0% month-to-month, pushing the year-over-rate up to 7.9% from 1.4% in March and an average of 4.0% in Q1. The headline was boosted by a favourable calendar effect, as April this year had two more trading days than April 2015.
Strong fundamentals have supported private consumption in Mexico recently, but we now expect a slowdown. Spending will not collapse, though, because consumer credit growth, formal employment, real wage income and remittances will continue to underpin consumption for the next three-to-six months.
The Mexican economy's brightest spot continues to be private consumption.
Evidence of slowing economic activity in Colombia continues to mount. Retail sales fell 2.0% year- over-rate in April, down from a revised plus 3.0% in March; and the underlying trend is falling. This year's consumption tax increase, low confidence, tight credit conditions, and rising unemployment continue to put private consumption under pressure.
Banxico left Mexico's benchmark interest rate at a record low of 3% last week, maintaining its neutral tone and indicating that the balance of risks has worsened for growth, while the risks for future inflation are unchanged. Policymakers acknowledged the external headwinds to the Mexican economy, but underscored that private consumption has gathered strength thanks to improving employment, low inflation, higher overseas remittances, and better credit conditions.
In one line: Decent momentum in private consumption, but threats are rising.
Brazil's GDP rose by 0.1% quarter-on-quarter in the third quarter, according to the report published last Friday. The slight growth was driven by investment and government spending, both growing 1.3%, while private consumption fell 0.3%, the biggest drop since late 2008.
Mexico's data over the last few weeks have confirmed our view that private consumption remains the key driver of the current economic cycle. Solid economic fundamentals, thanks to stimulative monetary policy and structural reforms, have supported the domestic economy in recent quarters. Falling inflation has also been a key driver, slowing to 2.5% by mid-September, a record low, from an average of 4% during 2014.
In one line: A strong Q3 and upside risks to private consumption looking forward.
Mexican consumers started the third quarter strongly, supporting our relatively upbeat view for the economy in the near term. Private consumption represents about 70% of Mexico's GDP, one of the consumption shares in the EM world, so the strength of spending is hugely important.
Real GDP in Germany grew 0.7% quarter-on-quarter in Q4, thanks mainly to a 0.4% contribution from private consumption, and a 0.2% boost from net trade. Household consumption grew 2.2% annualised in 2014, the best year for German consumers since 2006.
A downbeat French INSEE consumer sentiment report yesterday continued the run of poor survey data this week. The headline index fell to 95 in February from 97 in January, indicating downside risk f or Q1 consumers' spending. But we remain optimistic that private consumption will rebound solidly, following a 0.4% quarter-on-quarter fall in Q4.
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