110 New Cases Confirmed; 2,965 Tested NegativeBy Ricardo Guzman | Thu, 03/26/2020 - 21:18
The death of two patients, 110 new confirmed cases and 2,965 patients who have tested negative for the COVID-19 virus were all reported today by Ana Lucía de la Garza Barroso, director of Epidemiological and Operational Research in the Ministry of Health. During the March 26 COVID-19 press briefing, De la Garza highlighted that smoking, liver failure, asthma, obesity, diabetes and immunosuppression were the main health factors associated with those who have died. Likewise, the groups of people over 65 and those between 55 and 59 have the highest number of deaths.
As of Thursday, March 26
110 new cases (from yesterday)
585 confirmed cases nationwide
2,156 under investigation
Impact on markets (19.45 hrs)
US Dollar MX$23.09 (-4.93%)
BMV IPC 35,706.57 (0.48%)
Dow Jones 22,206.02 (4.74%)
S&P lowers Mexico’s sovereign debt rating
Standard and Poor’s lowered Mexico’s sovereign debt rating from BBB+ to BBB, the agency has reported. The impact on the Mexican economy from the COVID-19 crisis in both Mexico and the US, as well as a sharp drop in international oil prices, were the main reasons behind the lowered rating. “These shocks, although temporary, will worsen the already weak growth trend for 2020-2023, which somehow reflects a decreasing confidence from the private sector and lack of investment,” Standard and Poor’s said in a statement.
Mexican peso sees third day of gains
The Mexican peso hit a third day of gains against the US dollar after the greenback saw its value weakening in international markets. According to Banxico, the Mexican currency appreciated 3.36 percent, or 81 cents, in yesterday’s session, ending the day at MX$23.18 per dollar. A sharp increase in unemployment reported in the US and the fiscal package approved by the US Senate had a major impact on the US dollar in international markets, letting other currencies take back some of the ground lost in recent weeks.
Mexican export mix plunges
After recording increases of 4.76 and 4.86 percent on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively, the Mexican export mix fell 12.89 percent to US$14.67 per barrel on Thursday. The short-term expectation for crude oil remained weak as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses and confinement measures threaten to dramatically reduce fuel demand. So far this year the Mexican mix has an accumulated loss of 73.8 percent from starting 2020 at US$56.00. The international benchmarks WTI and Brent closed today with falls of 4.60 and 2.14 percent, at US$24.15 and US$27.51 per barrel, respectively.
Stimulus package boosts Wall Street
Stocks kept the good pace on Wall Street on Thursday, setting the market on track for its first three-day rally in six weeks. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 6.38 percent, which placed it at 22,552.17 points; S&P 500 gained 6.02 percent to 2,624.52 units and Nasdaq rose 5.60 percent, sitting at 7,797.54 points. The breakthroughs came after Republican and Democrat senators approved a US$2 trillion stimulus package focused on spending and tax incentives, to boost the US economy affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
BBVA will support customers
As of April 2, BBVA Mexico clients who have financial problems due to COVID-19 contingency measures will be able to access support programs directed for individuals and businesses, the bank has reported. The proposal includes up to four months of grace for capital or interests payments, to customers who request it. Support includes automobile, mortgage, payroll and personal loans, as well as credit cards, simple credit for SMEs and business credit cards.
The Institute of the National Fund for Workers Housing (INFONAVIT) announced a package of emergency measures worth almost MX$20 billion, the agency head Carlos Martínez has reported. Starting April 15, contingency measures will include unemployment insurance for workers and the extension of up to six months for mortgage payments, without charges. Martínez explained that the package was planned in coordination with the Economic Cabinet and health authorities.
CANIFARMA will prioritize heath contingency
The National Chamber of the Pharmaceutical Industry (CANIFARMA) said it will prioritize the manufacture of the necessary medications to face the COVID-19 crisis. “Under the leadership of the Ministry of Health and with the support of the Federal Commission for the Protection against Health Risks (COFEPRIS), we express our availability to prioritize manufacturing the medicines necessary to meet the demands of this emergency,” the agency he said in a statement.