A strong Q3 for LatAm, weakness in much of Asia

The latest data suggest that GDP growth in much of Emerging Asia slowed markedly in Q3, and that the recovery in Emerging Europe lost a bit of steam. Latin American economies generally strengthened, although the property slowdown in China poses a headwind to the region’s commodity producers.
Kimberley Sperrfechter Assistant Emerging Markets Economist
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EM recoveries enter a more difficult phase

Persistent supply shortages, fading reopening boosts and tighter financial conditions all pose headwinds to recoveries in Emerging Europe and Latin America over the coming quarters, while cooling construction activity looks set to weigh on growth in China. By contrast, the near-term outlook has brightened in South East Asia as economies emerge from lockdowns.

25 November 2021

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Headwinds build as financial conditions tighten

The sharp tightening of financial conditions in Latin America and Emerging Europe will add to headwinds facing both regions and feeds into our view that recoveries there are entering a slower phase. Financial conditions in Asia have tightened too, albeit to a much smaller extent. And with most central banks in the region in no rush to raise interest rates, conditions there will probably stay loose for some time yet.

24 November 2021

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EM tightening cycles have further to run

Inflation in the emerging world has generally surprised to the upside in recent months. But while inflation in most parts of Asia remains at levels which central banks are comfortable with, it has risen well above target in much of Emerging Europe and Latin America. Soaring energy (and in some countries food) prices explain a big chunk of the rise in headline rates, although the re-opening of economies and goods shortages have caused core price pressures to intensify too. This has prompted central banks to step on the brakes and raise interest rates, with policymakers in Brazil, Chile and Czechia in particular stepping up the pace of tightening over the past few weeks. Looking ahead, with inflation across both Latin America and Emerging Europe set to remain above central bank targets for a while yet, further rate hikes lie in store. The key exception is Turkey where, under pressure from President Erdogan, the central bank has signalled that it will ease policy again at its next meeting.

19 November 2021

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Net capital outflows from emerging markets appear to have eased over the past month, helped by a pickup in portfolio flows into South East Asia and India. Looking ahead, even if rising US Treasury yields were to trigger renewed outflows in the coming months, vulnerabilities in most major EMs look limited.

15 September 2021

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EM financial conditions still loose barring LatAm

Our financial conditions indices show that conditions remain loose by historic standards in most EMs. The key exception is Latin America, where conditions have tightened sharply this year due to rising interest rates and fiscal risks. This could pose a headwind to economic recoveries in the region.

13 September 2021

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Evergrande & frontier sovereign debt risks build

The combination of large foreign-currency debt burdens, low FX reserves and weakening currencies means that the risk of sovereign defaults in Sri Lanka and Tunisia is growing. Elsewhere, China’s largest property developer, Evergrande, appears to be close to collapse, which would cause large losses for banks and bondholders. Were this to cause stress in the banking sector, the government would ultimately step in to restore stability. Elsewhere, banking sectors in Turkey, India and the UAE are points of concern.

9 September 2021
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