Friday, September 9, 2016

FT Latam Viva For 9 September, 2016

FINANCIAL TIMES - Latam Viva: Your weekly briefing from the region
Brazil's year of living dangerously
By Joe Leahy 
September 9, 2016
In the months leading up to the impeachment of Brazil's former president Dilma Rousseff, it looked like the left had left the battlefield. There were some protests by the unions which make up the support base of Ms Rousseff`s Workers' Party but nothing very spirited. Following her removal last week, however, the pace of the protests has suddenly picked up. Masked protesters have made a reappearance and have been clashing with police, recalling the start of the mass demonstrations against the World Cup in 2013 that marked the beginning of the end for Ms Rousseff.
Her replacement, Michel Temer, meanwhile, has been trying to make light of a controversial last-minute twist to the impeachment vote. While the senate voted overwhelmingly to remove Ms Rousseff, a second vote was defeated on whether she should be banned from public office for eight years as required by the constitution. The left is pointing to the split decision as showing a lack of conviction by the senate, proving its point that the impeachment was a farce mounted by corrupt politicians to try to gain power to protect themselves from investigation. Mr Temer and his ruling alliance, meanwhile, have dismissed the split vote as a quirky detail that did not change the outcome.
In Mexico, the fallout continues from an entirely different political drama – the meeting between US presidential candidate Donald Trump and Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto. Finance minister Luis Videgaray, the man who organised the meeting, has resigned amid anger over how Mr Trump used it to underline his demand that Mexico build and pay for a wall to keep illegal immigrants out of the US. The departure of Mr Videgaray, who was the architect of an ambitious structural reform programme in Mexico, was followed by the announcement of a new austerity budget for 2017. New finance minister José Antonio Meade is seeking to boost investor confidence following the Trump debacle.
Mexico is also considering a bill if Mr Trump becomes president and fulfills a campaign promise to unilaterally end the North American Free Trade Agreement. The proposal would rip up treaties going back as far as the 1848 deal that transferred half the nation to the US.
Quote of the Week
“It would be one of the most significant events in gaming history if Brazil opens up to the gambling sector” - UK bookmaker William Hill on Brazil considering lifting a 70-year ban on gambling to help raise taxes.
Chart of the Week
Why emerging market bonds are not the answer for the yield-starved.

The week in review
Mexico steps up austerity plans in 2017 budget
Finance minister who only took up post on Wednesday aims for big spending cuts and return to surplus
Apathy on the streets of post-Rousseff Brazil
Notebook: Indifference is widespread yet rational, writes Samantha Pearson
Mexico minister resigns over Donald Trump visit
Republican candidate’s meeting with President Peña Nieto caused political backlash
Venezuela’s under-fire government clamps down on media
Journalists detained and threatened as unhappiness over unpopular president Nicolás Maduro grows
Brazilian activists demand impeachment of judge in Rousseff trial
Critics say former president faced ‘impeachment with impunity’
Mexico considers bill to revoke US treaties if Trump wins election
Initiative would review 1848 accord that gave away swath of territory
Brazil follows UK and Australia in search of gambling tax
Gaming often makes a sizeable contribution to receipts
Brazil hopes gambling will reverse its fortunes
Government eyes tax revenues to plug country’s budget deficit
Temer, Rousseff’s successor, needs luck and judgment
The president has a chance to stabilise Brazil and begin painful reforms, writes George Magnus
How Mexican women wear their jewellery in dangerous times
Women in Mexico must balance their desire for joyful self-expression through jewellery with