Drug sales during the first quarter of 2020 grew by 65% compared to the same period last year. The turnover of the pharmaceutical industry reached 70.63 billion pesos ($1bn). Medicines of national origin concentrated 71% of sales, the remaining 29% corresponded to the sale of imported products. 88% of the sales of national production were destined to the domestic market, leaving 12% for export.
Meat exports grew 14.5%, and fresh fruit 17% in the first quarter of the year, according to data provided by the National Service for Agrifood Health and Quality (SENASA). Foreign sales of beef, poultry and pork products and by-products, they reached 334,964 tons, and the main destinations of the meat were: China, Chile, Israel and Germany. Exports of fresh fruit reached 415,715 tonnes, and the main markets were: Russia, Brazil, the United States, Italy and Paraguay.
Argentine shares on Wall Street rebounded by as much as 12%. Those that rose the most were those of Supervielle 11.9% and Transportadora de Gas del Sur 8.2%. In the local market, Merval was up 3.9%. The ones that gained the most were Supervielle 9.6% and Edenor 6.4%. The country risk rose slightly by 0.2% to 2,517 basis points.
Argentina is among the six countries that will suffer the most significant recessions as a result of the crisis unleashed by the coronavirus: the International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts a 9.9% contraction by 2020. By 2021 the Argentine economy will be one of the least recovered with a 3.9% improvement.
July 24 is the new deadline for reaching an agreement with foreign bondholders; the national government should pay $944 million in debt interest under international legislation. But it will not. Thus, new securities will be added to the default in which Argentina entered on May 22 after did not pay $503 million in interest on three Global bonds.
The investment bank Morgan Stanley decided to keep Argentina as an emerging market. It means that, by maintaining the category, there will be more money from abroad willing to come in and buy Argentine stocks and bonds. The problem, in any case, is not how they qualify from abroad, but how the government organizes the resources of the State and arbitrates the economy.
Argentina’s Industrial Production Index (IPI) carried out by the Latin American Economic Research Foundation (FIEL) showed a 19.9% decline in May. The seasonally adjusted monthly fall was 3.7%, and the accumulated contraction of the first five months of the year reached 10.6% year-on-year. The decrease in automotive production, non-metallic minerals, steel production and fuel refining, led the fall.
Exports from the soybean complex this marketing year could fall by $1.8 billion, while the national government’s withholding tax revenues would be reduced by more than $1 billion as a result of a smaller harvest and low international prices. It was estimated by the Buenos Aires Grain Exchange (BCBA) in its oilseed campaign closing report.
Argentina’s economy fell in the first quarter of the year by 5.4% year-on-year. The INDEC noted that “there was a negative impact on the manufacturing industry, wholesale, retail and repairs as well as construction”. Regarding the demand, reductions were observed in all the components: Private consumption (-6.6% year-on-year), Public consumption (-0.7%), Gross fixed capital formation (-18.3%) and Exports (-4.7). Covering the toughest part of the quarantine, analysts estimate that the collapse in the second quarter will be more than 10%.
Unemployment rose to 10.4% during the first quarter of the year. According to the INDEC’s measurement, the increase was 0.3% compared to the same period in 2019 and 1.5% compared to the last three months of 2019. The people affected by unemployment in the 31 districts surveyed reached 1,394,000, while the underemployed are 1,569,000.