Friday, November 25, 2016

FT LatAmViva For November 25, 2016

Brace for turbulence
By Joe Leahy 
November 25, 2016
Events in Latin America this week signalled that tempestuous times in the region show no sign of abating – literally and figuratively.
Thousands were evacuated from their homes in Nicaragua as Hurricane Otto made landfall in the Caribbean state, also forcing people in neighbouring Costa Rica to flee for their lives. The 110-kilometre winds, classified as “dangerous” by the US National Hurricane Center, brought heavy rainfall, causing Costa Rica to declare a national emergency amid fears of landslides and damage to valuable coffee crops.
On the political front, Colombia`s President Juan Manuel Santos signed a revised peace accord with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or Farc, in spite of losing an historic referendum on the issue less than two months ago. Instead of holding another vote, the new deal will be put to congress, where the president, who won this year`s Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to secure the agreement, has a majority.
His critics, led by Álvaro Uribe, the divisive but popular former president who spearheaded the campaign against a deal with the Farc, decried the new pact as barely different from the one rejected in the referendum.
In Brazil, the start of a trial of former president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is expected to be a source of potential instability. The once wildly popular leader is accused of hiding assets hoarded from corruption related to state-owned oil company Petrobras. He denies the claims and any attempt to jail him could generate protests from militant supporters of his leftist Workers` Party, the PT.
Even staid Chile, seen as the responsible corner of South America for its steady management of its economy, may be heading for a period of turbulence, analysts warn. Protesters have burned buses, barricaded streets and even stormed parliament, angry over what they see as deepening inequality in spite of efforts by the government of President Michelle Bachelet and her left-wing coalition to introduce reforms. They warn the climate is ripe for a Trumpian populist to enter the picture.
On the business front, in good news for Brazil, Maersk Line is forecasting a doubling of beef exports from Latin America`s largest economy to China by 2020 as demand grows in the Asian giant for protein. Mexico also had some reason for cheer after the fear caused by Donald Trump`s election victory in the US. The country can expect a windfallof as much as $2.9bn next month from its annual oil hedging programme and an expected bonanza from the central bank that could pour close to $20bn into government coffers in April, analysts say.
Quote of the week
The new accord “possibly won’t satisfy everybody, but that’s what happens in peace accords” – Juan Manuel Santos, Colombian President.
“This accord will have a huge problem of legitimacy and those in the opposition will try to deepen this whenever they can” - Sandra Borda, a Bogotá-based political analyst. 
Chart of the week
Emerging market investors wait for Trump to show his hand (Premium)
The week in review
Colombia’s Santos signs new peace deal with Farc rebels
Critics say accord is barely different from one rejected in last month’s referendum
Mexican Modernism: a savage vision
A stirring exhibition in Philadelphia features tough truths in 20th century revolutionary art
Art and exchange in Buenos Aires
Federico Castro Debernardi is on a mission to open his country’s vibrant art scene up to the world
Art museums heating up Miami’s cultural scene
Many institutions have gained new directors, with more women now in charge. Gareth Harris surveys the city’s scene
The Art Market: It’s the experience that counts
Sotheby’s action plan; lacklustre Latin American sales; newart database; the dot-art domain; a cul-de-sac of culture
José Cuervo: hitting the rocks
Opportunity to venture deeper into the spirit world
Miami spice: a unique mix
Edwin Heathcote surveys the city’s diverse styles and asks how it will keep its character
In Miami Beach, a once run-down district gets a bold new start
This weekend’s launch of an amibitious new arts centre marks a key stage in the rebirth of the Faena District
Why a Paris corner shop taught FT writer the most about France
Adam Thomson is leaving the city after three years, but will not forget the place that was his portal to French culture
Hurricane Otto forces emergency evacuations in Nicaragua
Thousands moved from their homes there and in Costa Rica as storm makes landfall
Emergency evacuations begin as Hurricane Otto hits Nicaragua
World's largest tequila maker puts IPO on ice
It's the USD's world, we just get to trade in it
Renminbi weakens to 6.92 against dollar
Bare-knuckled truce politics in Colombia
The leader of the No camp risks becoming an enemy of peace
Mexico looks to oil and central bank windfalls
Bank of Mexico surplus may beat records even as hedging programme falls short
Who's afraid of Trump? Not Mexican stocks
EM stocks get reprieve from 'Trump tantrum'
Peru prevention
Donald Trump faces the reality of world trade
The US president-elect must decide what to do about China
Sabadell shares slide after major shareholder sells stake
Lula’s trial set to widen rifts in Brazil
The legacy of the once wildly popular former leader is tested in court
PDVSA only made partial bond payments - JPMorgan
Banco do Brasil to cut jobs and close branches
Latin America’s biggest bank aims to reduce workforce by 17% as recession bites
Banco do Brasil unveils major cost cutting drive
Chile faces spectre of its own populist backlash
Anger over social inequality simmers in a country long viewed as well managed