By Grace Fan, Trusted Sources
One-third of the way through his six-year term, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto has dazzled investors with his ambitious reform record, the cornerstone of his administration’s broader development programme to revitalize the sluggish Mexican economy. But the telegenic 48-year-old leader with a reputation for results-oriented governing has failed to convince his increasingly sceptical domestic constituency that he can deliver the goods.
Tepid GDP growth, devastating security problems, political mis-steps and escalating corruption allegations at the end of the year have embroiled him in the worst political crisis in the two-year history of his administration. Read more
“If you see ten troubles coming down the road, you can be sure that nine will run into the ditch before they reach you.”
For about two weeks in late October, it seemed as if these optimistic words from Calvin Coolidge, the former US president, might have encapsulated the mindset of emerging market (EM) investors.
But the late October rally in EM financial assets has now stalled. Investors are relinquishing hopes that market troubles may turn out to be mere phantoms and focusing again on the very real problems coming their way. Four of the most intractable are set out below. Read more
For months, the word “oil” in Mexico has gone hand-in-hand with “reform”, with the government giddily looking ahead to a rosy future filled with billions of dollars pouring into the sector.
Then oil prices tanked and people started whispering that maybe Mexico’s energy reform was not looking so attractive after all, and maybe Mexico’s fragile economic recovery might be given another knock. Read more
The sigh of relief coming out of Mexico has been practically audible. “Alleluia!” exclaimed Nomura in a research note.
It’s not so much that there was doubt that growth was really happening, though after last year’s shock slump (GDP expanded a meagre 1.1 per cent overall), taking growth for granted looks ill-advised.
However, the indication that GDP grew by a stronger-than-expected 2.52 per cent in July, the fourth consecutive monthly rise, is a reassuring confirmation that things are on the right track. Read more
The Mexican economy grew by 1.1 per cent in 2013, its slowest rate since the 2009 recession and well short of the 3.5 per cent that President Enrique Peña Nieto initially expected during his first year in office.
In the fourth quarter, GDP expanded 0.2 per cent seasonally adjusted, due to slower growth in industrial sectors. The pace of expansion was significantly below market expectations for 0.6 per cent growth, leading to concerns over the health of the North American economy. Barclays Capital said the weak growth was probably the result of slow US imports and a “still fragile domestic consumer”. Read more
With very little to brag about so far in economic terms, the one-year-old government of Enrique Peña Nieto, president of Mexico, is betting on a banner year in 2014.
Having learnt a tough lesson on the crucial role that government spending, particularly on infrastructure projects, plays in Mexico’s economic performance, the government is not just trying to avoid this year’s budget delays — it is already moving on with assigning projects that are scheduled to start in 2014.
At least it is doing so with Tuesday’s planned announcement of 15bn pesos (US$1.15bn) worth of public work projects it plans to assign through public bidding processes.
As a result, the authorities are hoping that by announcing these new projects as early as Tuesday, they’ll be ready to allocate them in the first weeks of January so that the winners can start their construction by late next month or early February. Read more
After a disappointing year, the Mexican economy seems to have turned the corner.
At least that’s what the third-quarter GDP numbers show. For starters, its annual growth rate of 1.3 per cent exceeded expectations of a 1 percent growth rate, and its quarter-to-quarter seasonally adjusted number came in positive (o.8 percent), ending all speculations that Mexico would fall into recession.
The economy actually contracted 0.6 percent in the second quarter, an unexpected event for a country that was expected to continue its growth momentum of the past three years. Read more
Mexico is going to have to pull its socks up if it wants to reach the government’s official growth forecast this year.
Let’s recap: the economy saw first quarter growth of 0.8 per cent; a second quarter contraction of 0.7 per cent, and now third quarter growth of 1 per cent. Read more
Mexico’s growth: shall we start with the good news, or the not-so-good news?
The good news is that the economy grew in May at its fastest pace for six months according to new data. The not-so-good news though is that the growth rate was worse than expected, and so second quarter GDP might disappoint (after already discouraging first quarter growth of just 0.8 per cent that prompted the government to trim its 2013 growth forecast to 3.1 per cent from 3.9 per cent in 2012). Read more
If Mexico’s strong economic recovery since the 2009 recession has been about manufacturing and exports, the latest data suggest that from now on it is going to be about consumption.
That is the message from figures for the last three months of 2012, which show that growth between October and December was 0.8 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms compared with the previous three months (in the third quarter, the figure was just 0.4 per cent). Read more
What to make of Mexico’s new labour law, which finally met with approval from the country’s Senate this week and is expected to be signed into law any day now?
Read some of the international coverage, and you might form the idea that the law is a watered-down initiative that fails to open up the dark and murky world of Mexico’s powerful unions. And you’d be right – sort of. Read more
Has the global slowdown finally caught up with Mexico? Depends on who you ask.
The most recent figures from the finance ministry showed that third-quarter annual growth stood at 3.3 per cent, slower that the 4.1 per cent year-on-year increase of the second quarter and the 4.5 per cent in the first. Read more
Mexico could conclude the year with economic growth of as much as 5 percent, Gerardo Rodríguez, the deputy finance minister said Monday.
Good news indeed. Most analysts had been forecasting 4 per cent at most, while the International Monetary Fund has pencilled in 3.9 per cent. But there were two “ifs” in the minister’s bold forecast. Read more