Media and Latam Navel Gaze: April 17, 2017

Mark Kollar,  Ligia Vela-Reid

 Not sorry. Sorry. Multiple times from multiple big names in business and government with the United debacle getting the most coverage by a long shot as the world watched the shame of it all.  No need repeating the incident but everyone become a PR expert – except United brass – about how best to handle the situation.  The short of it: Fess up and let common sense and good manners prevail. Elsewhere:

  • More buttons pushed as “the mother of all bombs” was dropped on ISIS targets in Afghanistan following the attach on Syria last week; This while North Korea launched a test missile that failed but likely may hit stocks this week;
  • Trump seems to have made nice with China and NATO, backpedaling  campaign harangues seemingly to set up alliances amid his tough talk and visible action;
  • The Trump camp has begun its re-election fundraising, according to Federal Election Commission reports, earlier than any sitting president in recent history;
  • Stocks were slightly weaker last week, with the Dow down about a percentage point to 20,453;
  • Tesla flirted with being the biggest US carmaker by market cap last week, a milestone that received lots of ink, to those I guess who see the company only as a carmaker and not also a battery maker;
  • Clawback time at Wells Fargo to the tune of some $75 million from former executives following a board report that slammed the ex-CEO;
  • The Uber communications chief quit in the middle of its seemingly endless PR crises;
  • The Charging Bull sculptor is coming on a little bearish to the Fearless Girl, saying Miss Akimbo is a violation of copyright and trademark laws (and a little “jelly”?);
  • Fox’s Bill O’Reilly went on a self-described “planned” vacation; and
  • Coachella is happening, if you can even…

 LATAM GAZE

 Argentina’s government will be travelling to China in the coming weeks to discuss opportunities for collaboration. During these meetings, China, already the main financier of Argentina’s infrastructure projects and one of the largest contributors to the Central Bank's reserves, will now discuss potential financing solutions for Argentina’s housing sector.

In Brazil, President Michel Temer’s government is reeling after a Supreme court judge placed dozens of politicians under formal investigation for bribery. The investigation, known as Operation Car Wash, has already unveiled billions of dollars in kickbacks and bribes paid to politicians by Brazilian companies, including the construction giant Odebrecht. Former President Dilma Rousseff, who was ousted during this investigation, will be speaking at George Washington University on Tuesday.

 Chile’s Central Bank cut its key interest rate this week by 25 basis points to 2.75%. It’s the third cut this year as the country works to stimulate economic growth.

Despite a strong start to 2017, Mexico’s main stock index, the BMV, registered its largest decrease since January this week on the heels of volatility in the utilities sector and negative investor sentiment in US markets.

Panama was informed by Bulgaria that it will be removed from the blacklist of countries with whom it will not have financial dealings, effective in July of this year. The decision comes after Panama’s improved cooperation in how it discloses financial information as the country looks to distance itself from the shadow cast by the Panama Papers incident of 2015.

Peru’s government reported March net tax revenues reached S/ 7,864 million (US$2.4 billion), a 13.8% decrease from the prior quarter driven primarily by lower income tax collection.   

End of Week Market Updates

  • Merval (Argentina):   +   0.41%
  • Bovespa (Brazil):        -   2.74%
  • IPSA (Chile):               -   0.61%
  • IGBC (Colombia):       +   0.73%
  • IPC (Mexico):              -   0.79%
  • BVL (Peru):                 -    0.01%

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