Mexico (America) fact of the day

by on January 29, 2016 at 1:43 am in Current Affairs, Data Source, Economics | Permalink

Mexican non-oil exports to USA in December (y/y): -4.5%. Excluding autos: -8.7%.

That is from Genevieve Signoret, via this source.

It’s funny how these numbers seem to indicate someone is starting to enter a recession.  Who might that be?  Maybe it’s just noise, I don’t see any other mediocre economic reports wandering around these parts…  Or maybe it’s Mexico that’s the problem

1 prior_test January 29, 2016 at 2:03 am

‘Who might that be?’

Almost as if the idea of a state wracked by growing violence and corruption would not show any aspects of such problems in other spheres. Or that additionally, Mexican exports that are not recorded have been growing as part of Mexico’s continuing problems with drug cartel violence and power. Such an opaque situation for an economist, it seems.

Oddly, though the statistics are not readily available, it is fairly certain that Syrian exports to Turkey are also down. One hopes that only the occasional economist is puzzled by such things.

2 msgkings January 29, 2016 at 2:04 am

Woulda been a lot smarter, more relevant, and less douchy to just type “First”.

3 Ray Lopez January 29, 2016 at 2:08 am

Well said by prior_test….msgkings, how’s that food allergy coming? Still an ice hockey fan in LA? Loser.

4 Dzhaughn January 29, 2016 at 4:23 am

Gretzky left Edmonton for it. “No, it’s ‘Hockney’, with an ‘N'”

5 Ray Lopez January 29, 2016 at 10:00 am

The Great Gretzky sold his soul for $$$. Also, though not being a hockney fan, I would not be surprised if the referees gave him breaks that allowed him to score easily, not unlike Mike Jordan in b-ball.

6 msgkings January 29, 2016 at 12:25 pm

We now can add sports to the enormously long list of things Ray Lopez knows nothing about

7 dan1111 January 29, 2016 at 6:26 am

So far the rule “any comment that Ray Lopez attacks must be correct” has not failed me.

8 Time of Day January 29, 2016 at 12:59 pm

You read his comments?

9 JoS. S. Laughon January 29, 2016 at 11:47 am

As crappy as the violence is, it does seem to be contained to a few regions/sectors of Mexico. The drug war didn’t slow down Mexico’s imports in any other year and in fact they were growing quite a lot. Suggests there are other factors in the decline.

10 Cliff January 29, 2016 at 11:56 am

Isn’t Mexico dramatically improved in that area compared to the last 10 years or so?

11 Art Deco January 29, 2016 at 12:28 pm

Almost as if the idea of a state wracked by growing violence and corruption

Tranparency International rank orders foreign countries from survey research. Mexico’s never scored well. Mexico’s stock fell from 2006 to 2010, but not in the years since. The homicide rate also grew worse during that four year interval. Mexican homicide rates are Latin American normal. Your endemic social problems are unlikely to cause year to year flux in your production and trade statistics.

12 MC January 30, 2016 at 3:56 am

+1

13 Tom Warner January 29, 2016 at 2:48 am

If I understand right and that is a single month versus the same month of the previous year, then of course you can’t tell from a single month if it’s meaningful or just noise. If it were full year 15 vs full year 14 (true year-on-year) that would be meaningful. I just looked at some data for Mexican exports ex-HS27 (mineral fuels and closely related products, broader than oil), which only went up to October. By single months the numbers hop around, but they are on average a lot better in Jan-June than July-Oct.

14 Adjoran January 29, 2016 at 6:02 am

This may or may not be part of the early warnings, but the signs of coming recession are beginning to show up everywhere. Sluggish global growth impacts US exports, a main economic driver in recent decades. Low interest retards the formation of private capital for investment, important for domestic growth. And the other main business sign, construction, isn’t setting the world on fire, either. Consumers sense these outer signs and don’t spend freely, another of the domestic keys.

15 msgkings January 29, 2016 at 12:29 pm

This is very possible, all the talk of global recession could become a self-fulfilling prophecy. No one thought a recession was imminent in early 2008 either. That said, recessions happen, there will be another, and then there will be a recovery afterwards.

16 Alan January 29, 2016 at 6:34 am

From the Twitter link:
Mexican non-oil non-auto exports to countries other than USA in December -13.3% y/y. <= PLEASE NOTE.

Am I missing something?

17 dearieme January 29, 2016 at 6:37 am

Do economists now use “mediocre” in the same way as sports commentators, to mean “lousy”?

18 Axa January 29, 2016 at 7:11 am

If anyone cares about the data, the export data from Jan 1991 to Dec 2015. Dot-Com bubble and Great Recession are pretty visible: http://alturl.com/8jibq Looking at the Jan 2009 -Dec 2015 period “something” is happening that exports go down in December and January. http://alturl.com/gbaio Original data comes from here: http://www.inegi.org.mx/sistemas/bie/

Looking at the data the largest fall is in mining exports, no surprise since commodities have gone down. However, mining exports are just a third of agricultural exports and 2% of manufacturing exports. There’s also a -9.87% “fall” of non-automobile manufacturing exports from Dec 2014 to Dec 2015. But, Dec 2014 was up 14.75% from Dec 2013. It seems the surprise here is not Dec 2015 but Dec 2014.

What happened in Dec 2014 that non-automobile manufacturing exports reached an all-time high? And why people make conclusions based on the all-time high?

19 GF January 29, 2016 at 7:20 am

It’s noise Tyler: http://www.beta.inegi.org.mx/app/tabulados/default.html?nc=550

The December non-auto manufacturing exports are above the years average but because of weird base effects last year when they went up to 21bn in Dec the y-o-y number looks big.

20 Tom Warner January 29, 2016 at 11:08 pm

Thanks. That’s for whole world not just to US but up to date. It confirms what I was saying: the December # looks like noise, but nonetheless there is an obvious weakening trend in the 2nd half of ’15 relative to the 1st.

21 Thiago Ribeiro January 29, 2016 at 7:55 am

The Mexican regime is unreformable.

22 Aaron J January 29, 2016 at 11:13 am

Not to deny his flaws, but Pena Nieto has enacted some pretty significant reforms.

23 JoS. S. Laughon January 29, 2016 at 11:47 am

Easy to imagine on the outside, it is actually fairly remarkable the reform of the last 60 years.

24 Art Deco January 29, 2016 at 12:40 pm

The political order is quite dissimilar to what it was 50 years ago (competitive politics replacing an impregnable machine) and most state enterprises were liquidated or sold after 1982.

25 Chris January 29, 2016 at 1:03 pm

I think there has been considerable reform since 1986. Mexico is a very different country now.

Carlos Salinas inaugurated free market reforms, and Mexico has never looked back. But it was still politically controlled by the PRI and very corrupt.

Ernest Zedillo cemented the economic reforms and allowed political reforms to happen. Prior to Zedillo, economic crisis always hit after the elections because the PRI ramped up spending to ensure elections and then cut back. Since 1998 this political risk has been eliminated. Mexico’s ups and downs are based on normal economic factors. And of course, he refused to cheat the next elections so that for the first time a non-PRI candidate won the Presidency. Mexico was still corrupt, but some of the worse examples were cut.

Vicente Fox and Feilpe Calderon followed and were both not from the PRI. Neither was able to make substantial headway in further economic reforms, but cemented the political reforms and ensured the PRI’s dinosaurs could not reverse the democratic gains.

Pena Nieto was able to push through several significant reforms, and because he was from the reformist faction within the PRI has continued the democratization of the past two decades.

Mexico still has lots of corruption and high crime, but it is very different from what it was like in the 1970s and 1980s. It has a competitive export economy and moving up the value adding chain. After having China take some of its role as a low cost producer, it successfully made enough reforms to reverse that. It has several regions behind its economic growth. It is not just a one trick pony. Future progress is not inevitable, but I think its prospects look good. It still needs to achieve several milestones before it completes its transformation however.

26 Art Deco January 29, 2016 at 5:06 pm

The sales and liquidations of state enterprises began under Miguel de la Madrid. Also, PRI’s political monopoly began to unravel then as well.

27 Aaron J January 29, 2016 at 8:11 am

I would guess the sargassum seaweed in Cancun and warm American winter are a part of the story here.

28 JoS. S. Laughon January 29, 2016 at 11:48 am

Where’s Sailer to praise how good, WASPy white oil and cars are beating out those cheap swarthy Latin oil and cars?

29 Cliff January 29, 2016 at 11:58 am

I don’t think he has any problem with Mexicans in Mexico

30 Art Deco January 29, 2016 at 12:44 pm

Sailer finds blacks amusing, Puerto Ricans chronic underperformers, and Mexicans unambitious and somewhat loutish (litter in parks, &c).

31 anon January 29, 2016 at 12:01 pm

Why do Sailer trolls make the most dull, inane comments? Their comments are some of the lamest attempts at satire that I’ve ever seen.

32 msgkings January 29, 2016 at 12:31 pm

Why are Sailer fanboys so touchy?

33 Horhe January 30, 2016 at 7:32 am

Because we’re lean and hungry, and don’t have the easy smugness of being in the mainstream. Challengers are more feisty than incumbents.

34 msgkings January 30, 2016 at 11:47 pm

That’s not what ‘touchy’ means.

35 Dots January 29, 2016 at 12:27 pm

priced in USD? peso weakened significantly vs USD. maybe trade elasticity laggy, incompletely elastic

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