Mexico is studying the possibility of raising limits imposed on foreign ownership of companies in key business sectors, such as energy, transport and telecommunications.
The investigation, the first findings of which could be ready as soon as November, is part of a wider attempt to make Mexico’s economy more dynamic and competitive as it recovers from deep recession in 2009.
It is about time.
As the FT first reported in May, Netflix, the US-based DVD subscription and online video streaming service, is setting up in Latin America.
The US-based group launched its movie and TV streaming business at the Grand Hyatt in São Paulo with much fanfare on Monday, saying it would launch in virtually every country in Latin America by next Monday.
Chile’s economic growth remains solid, but the pace now definitely looks to be slackening. Economic activity data on Monday came in at 4 per cent for July compared with last year’s 6.1 per cent, and below market forecasts of 4.2 per cent growth.
The growth rate, the weakest since the aftermath of Chile’s devastating February 2010 earthquake, was the latest in a string of disappointing data – industrial output data at a 15-month low and an 18 per cent slump in the output of copper, of which Chile is the world’s top producing nation, accounting for a third of global supply.
Pakistan’s main stock market may have given some comfort to equity investors on Monday when the main KSE-100 index rose just below one per cent on its first day of trade following the post Ramadan holidays marking the ‘Eid’ festival.
But Karachi’s investors were more anxiously watching the beginning of proceedings that the supreme court has launched to examine the underlying causes of this year’s bloody violence.
Perhaps unsurprisingly in a country where inflation has been firmly entrenched in double digits for the past four years and is expected to top 25 per cent this year, Argentines are increasingly struggling to fund their healthcare.
Rosneft’s new agreement with Exxon last week was a big boost for the Russian oil group. It also appears to have been a big boost for a certain group of investors.
Russia’s market regulator has launched an insider trading investigation into Rosneft’s shares following sharp gains in the stock in the days ahead of last week’s announcement. (Shares in the company rose 12.5 per cent in the three trading days before the deal was announced.)
Unfortunately for those who aim to reform Moscow’s investment climate, these kinds of movements aren’t exactly unusual.
Czech equities took a hit on Monday, amid the deterioration in global sentiment, technical difficulties on the Prague exchange and a report that Brussels was widening an investigation of CEZ, Czech energy giant.
Prague benchmark index closed 5.18 per cent down, posting by far the biggest losses in the CEE region.
There is something very unusual about the new Medicover hospital in the southern Warsaw suburb of Wilanow – it is clean, quiet and almost empty, while most Polish hospitals are jammed with patients lining up in hallways that have not seen a paintbrush in decades.
That’s because the Medicover facility is private – part of a growing number of private hospitals and clinics springing up in Poland to take care of patients unhappy with the overcrowded and underfunded public sector.
The former Soviet republic of Georgia is not on many investors’ minds – yet. But Bank of Georgia, the country’s number one bank – and the only actively traded stock in the country – intends to reincorporate as a UK holding company and shift to a premium London Stock Exchange listing. That will replace the global depositary receipts that have traded in London since 2006 with ordinary shares, opening it to a much broader universe of investors.
For the past several months, speculation has been rife that hot money was flowing out of China into places like Hong Kong and Macao, prompting spikes in the prices of luxury residential properties and revenues collected at the baccarat tables respectively.
Then in July there was an unexplained drop in reported bank deposits to the tune of US$176bn, adding more grist to the rumour mill. Now it turns out there is a more prosaic explanation, say Standard Chartered economists Wei Li and Stephen Green.
ExxonMobil and Rosneft have plenty to do to get their strategic alliance moving from swapping notes on Arctic oil reserves to building a joint St Petersburg research centre. However, the real test of whether their new alliance works won’t become clear publicly until 2015 when the first serious spending begins.
Resource-rich Mongolia is considered a hot story among Asian investors, but an analysis of the IPOs of companies working in Mongolia shows their stocks have struggled, both in Asia and abroad.
The next test of equity investor demand will be the planned flotation of coal miner Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi in London, Hong Kong and Ulan Bator. If it goes ahead, the IPO will usefully expand the small band of Mongolia-linked companies in which international investors can actually put their money.
A reminder on Monday that inflation remains a real issue in key emerging market economies - despite all the evidence of a global economic slow down emanating mainly from the developed world.
Turkey surprised investors with a forecast-beating 6.65 per cent annual increase in consumer prices last month, that hit the Istanbul markets and cut the chances of an early interest rate reduction.
There is much India’s anti-corruption campaigners could do to help clean up governance. One improvement would be a regularly updated and credible register of assets held by parliamentarians.
Prime minister Manmohan Singh has made a start with a regularly published account of his ministers’ earnings. At the weekend, his office went further, releasing a list of assets held by cabinet ministers. The figures are likely to raise eyebrows.