The result of year-end foreign trade points to a contraction in economic activity, warns Jonathan Heath

Mexican exports fall 2.9% in November, Inegi reports

Shipments of products made in Mexico abroad grew 2.3 percent at the end of 2019 compared to the previous year, which meant its poorest increase since 2016, according to The Inegi.

Three years ago, shipments of domestic products abroad contracted 1.73 percent at an annual rate. However, in subsequent years they increased 9.5 and 10 percent

While the result clears the negative ground anticipated by the Mexican Council for Foreign Trade (Comce) last month by predicting a two-per cent contraction, the data published by Inegi on Tuesday reflects the slowdown in the economy Mexican virtually all of 2019.

The institute noted that in December total merchandise exports reported an increase of just 0.47 percent from the previous month, which broke with a negative two-month streak.

However, for the sub-governor of the Bank of Mexico (Banxico), Jonathan Heath, the result is far from positive. "Although exports increased by 0.47 per cent in December compared to the previous month, foreign trade data for the past three months suggest a drop in exports for the quarter and anticipate a negative rate for economic activity for the year-end," he said on his Twitter account.

In the last month of the year, Mexican sales across borders grew by three percent at an annual rate, driven by positive results across all of its segments.

Agricultural exports were the best performers, with growth of 7.5% compared to December 2018, followed by mining exports, which increased by 5.7%.

Ve por Más (BX+) highlighted a December growth of 4.3 percent in oil products shipments, which broke with a 13-month streak in negative terrain in its annual comparison.

The result was insufficient and shipments of hydrocarbons abroad fell 15.1 percent in 2019. On the other side of the currency, imports contracted 1.9% at the end of the year, thus Mexico's trade balance ended 2019 with a surplus of five billion dollars. The result was offset by the deficit of 13.704 million the previous year.

The trade balance had its first positive result since 2014. The fact boosted the peso, which closed the session with an appreciation of 18.7 cents, trading at 18.72 pesos per dollar.

" (The weight was) the most appreciated currency in the basket of major crosses. The Mexican peso was also driven by the publication of the trade balance that showed a surplus," said Gabriela Siller, director of Economic-Financial Analysis at the institution.http: