IMF confirms $3.5 bn draw

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will enable the Special Drawing Rights (SDR), with which there will be extra money that the financial organisation will transfer to the countries that have their contribution up to date. Argentina is one of them; it assumes that between $3.3 and $3.5 billion extra money will arrive from the IMF in the coming weeks, without the need for adjustment applications or any relation to the Extended Facilities agreement that the government is negotiating with the Fund. The money represents the country's 0.7 per cent quota share of its total contributions as an active member of the IMF.

January trade balance recorded $1.07 bn surplus

The trade balance recorded a surplus of $1.068 billion in January due to exports of $4.91 billion and imports of $3.84 billion. The first month's data seem to indicate a general improvement in the country's foreign trade conditions. Strictly speaking, the higher export earnings were the result of the increase in the price of soybeans averaging $500/tonne. In terms of quantities, there was a fall in shipments abroad.

Economic activity rose 1.3% in the first month of the year

Economic activity in January recorded year-on-year growth of 1.3%, according to estimates by the Orlando Ferreres Centre for Economic Studies. Half of the impetus for growth in the first month of the year came from industrial activity; the manufacturing sector is the engine of economic recovery after the financial collapse of 2020 caused by the covid-19 pandemic.

The economy fell 10% in 2020

Economic activity recorded a 2.2% drop in December compared to the same month in 2019, bringing the total slump to 10% in 2020, according to the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INDEC). Despite exhibiting a sharp contraction, the figure was better than expected, mainly because the construction and industry sectors recorded a strong rebound in the second half of the year.

JP Morgan bank warned that Argentina’s net reserves reach $3 bn

A report by JP Morgan, entitled "Argentina: the monetary policy labyrinth", notes that the BCRA's net or freely available reserves, which do not include loans and private deposits, are close to $3 trillion, including gold holdings. The BCRA would find it challenging to dispose today of the $2.4 billion needed to cancel a payment with the Paris Club at the end of May; moreover, renegotiating the Paris Club's maturity requires having signed the extended facilities agreement with the IMF, due to statutory issues.