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BNDES approves dividend policy; Peru estimates up to $9B flood recovery cost

* Under a new statute approved by Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social, the state-run bank will pay a minimum of 25% of its annual net income as dividends to the government, while the payment of an additional, variable amount of up to 35% will depend on the bank's profitability, Valor Econômico reported. This will leave at least 40% of the annual net income to be retained at the bank to support the company's budget.

* Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski said reconstruction efforts following strong floods in the country will cost up to $3 billion in the short term, although the cost will total up to $9 billion over a five-year period, Reuters reported. In March, Kuczynski said Peru will increase its 2017 budget by 3% to finance the recovery.

MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA

* Banco del Bajío SA filed a request on Mexican stock exchange BMV for a mixed public offering of shares, according to a notice on banking regulator CNBV's website. Bloomberg News reported earlier that the bank had renewed its interest in launching an IPO in a move that is speculated to generate between $250 million and $300 million.

* UNIFIN Financiera SAB de CV SOFOM ENR announced its 15th and 16th leasing securitizations of certificados bursátiles fiduciarios, or ABS, for 3.00 billion Mexican pesos. The transaction was done within a single trust and used a communicating vessel structure.

* Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo said negotiations to revamp the NAFTA trade pact could end as early as January 2018 if U.S. President Donald Trump notifies Congress in time for the talks to start by the end of July, Bloomberg News reported. "The U.S. has to trigger the mechanism," Guajardo said, adding that "it will be in the best interest of both countries involved to make this process very efficient."

* Economists and foreign exchange analysts surveyed by Reuters expect the Mexican peso to depreciate during the next six months, but a lot of fund managers say the currency is undervalued and may strengthen amid expectations that U.S. President Donald Trump will not implement many of his proposed protectionist policies, the newswire reported.

* Fitch Ratings said the finalized sale of Banco Mercantil del Norte SA Institución de Banca Múltiple's U.S. financial subsidiary, Inter National Bank, will not have any immediate impact on the ratings of the Mexican bank or parent company Grupo Financiero Banorte SAB de CV. The sale and its effects have already been factored into the companies' current ratings.

* Agustín Carstens, the governor of Mexico's central bank, said the NAFTA trade pact still has untapped benefits that should be leveraged instead of reversing the decades of economic integration the agreement is responsible for, El Economista reported.

* Financiera Nacional de Desarrollo Agropecuario Rural Forestal y Pesquero disbursed 2.3 billion Mexican pesos of loans in the state of Nuevo León during 2016, up from 2.1 billion pesos in the previous year, and plans to increase lending in the state by 15% in 2017, El Economista reported.

* The amount of voluntary savings received by Mexican pension fund administrators in the first two months of 2017 increased 30% compared to the same period a year ago, El Economista reported, citing data from pension regulator Consar.

* Banco Nacional de Obras y Servicios Públicos SNC plans to disburse around 95.0 billion Mexican pesos of loans during 2017 in order to maintain its annual loan portfolio growth at between 10% and 11%, El Economista reported, citing CEO Alfredo Vara.

BRAZIL

* Brazilian President Michel Temer said he has done all he can to alleviate legislators' concerns over a proposed pension reform, but he is still unwilling to reconsider the introduction of a minimum retirement age, which is a central tenet of the reform, Reuters reported.

* Brazil's government expanded its 2018 fiscal deficit target to 129 billion reais from 79 billion reais, Reuters reported. The government projects primary deficits of 65 billion reais and 10 billion reais for 2019 and 2020, respectively.

* Brazil's economic crisis and the so-called "Lava Jato" corruption scandal have caused a deterioration in the credit portfolio of state-run bank Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social during the last few years, Diário Comércio Indústria & Serviços reported. The bank's provisions for credit risk increased 524% between 2015 and 2016.

ANDEAN

* Fitch Ratings downgraded Banco CorpBanca Colombia SA's long-term national rating to AA+(col) from AAA(col), while revising the outlook to negative from stable. Fitch also revised its outlook on the bank's issuer default ratings to negative from stable. The downgrade was driven by deterioration in the bank's credit profile "to a point that is no longer consistent with the highest national scale rating relative to other entities rated in Colombia," Fitch said.

* Venezuela's national comptroller banned leading opposition politician Henrique Capriles from holding political office for 15 years due to alleged "administrative irregularities," Reuters reported. Capriles was believed to be the opposition's best chance of defeating President Nicolas Maduro in elections in 2018.

* Banco Central De Venezuela has struck an agreement to obtain at least $300 million in cash from U.S. investment fund Fintech Advisory Inc. to help boost Venezuela's liquidity, Reuters reported, citing "two market sources and a source close to the government." The central bank has agreed to a repurchase agreement using roughly $1.3 billion in bonds it currently holds, one of the sources said.

* Adrian Armas, head of economic studies at Peru's central bank, said the local financial market is expecting the bank to reduce its benchmark interest rate in a move that would cut borrowing costs for corporate clients, Reuters reported. The central bank recently decided to hold the rate at 4.25%, but signaled that it could alter its monetary policy strategy in the near term.

SOUTHERN CONE

* Fitch Ratings affirmed Uruguay's long-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings at BBB-, with a stable outlook, and the country's short-term foreign and local currency issuer default ratings at F3. The ratings balance Uruguay's strong structural features in terms of social and institutional development, a strong external balance sheet, and fiscal financing buffers with constraints that include a weak track record of compliance with inflation and fiscal targets, a relatively high and dollarized public debt burden, and budget rigidity.

* Argentine central bank chief Federico Sturzenegger said the bank has already started tightening monetary policy at the longer end of its yield curve, and inflation data for March shows that the tightening was required, Reuters reported.

* Banco Central del Uruguay Chairman Mario Bergara said Argentines withdrew $1 billion of deposits from Uruguayan bank accounts in 2016 to take advantage of a government amnesty program for repatriated funds, La Nación reported.

* State-owned banks in Argentina plan to grant an additional 35 billion Argentine pesos in 30-year, inflation-indexed mortgage loans during 2017, La Nación reported, citing several government sources.

PAN LATIN AMERICA

* Regional integration topped the agenda at the World Economic Forum on Latin America in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on April 7, with several government officials suggesting that a closer relationship between the region's two major trade blocs could be on the cards. "[We] need to inject more oxygen into Mercosur and no doubt the conversation we will start today with the Pacific Alliance will be essential," said Marcos Pereira, minister of industry, foreign trade and services for Brazil, which is a Mercosur member.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

* Asia-Pacific: Religare to divest stake in insurer; Thailand denies manipulating baht

* Middle East & Africa: Fitch cuts South Africa to junk; GTBank in Tanzania expansion

* Europe: Barclays CEO investigated; HBOS probed; Brexit contingency plans due by July

* North America: ISS wants 12 Wells directors out; Triton Aviation Finance considers liquidation

Matthew Craze contributed to this article.

The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 8 a.m. São Paulo time, and scans news sources published in English, Portuguese and Spanish. Some external links may require a subscription.