Transmission in 20.4 Percent of the MunicipalitiesBy Ricardo Guzman | Fri, 04/17/2020 - 21:32
Director of Epidemiology José Luis Alomía reported that Mexico had recorded 6,875 positive cases of COVID-19 and 546 deaths, as of Friday. Since the start of the pandemic, over 28,126 negative cases and 13,364 suspected have been registered while a further 48,365 people have been examined.
Alomía said that the 501 municipalities with at least one confirmed case means that the virus is present in 20.4 percent of the 2,457 municipalities throughout the country.
Deputy Minister of Healthy Hugo López-Gatell said that the end of the quarantine in low incidence municipalities will be on May 17. The officer said a Youtuber with COVID-19 who went outdoors knowing he had the virus could be sanctioned under the General Health Law.
As of Friday, April 15
578 new cases (from yesterday)
6,875 confirmed cases nationwide
13,364 under investigation
Impact on markets (19.30 hrs)
US Dollar MX$23.67 (-2.22%)
BMV IPC 34,743.10 (2.91%)
Dow Jones 24,242.49 (2.99%)
Moody's downgraded Mexico's credit rating
Given its medium-term economic growth prospects have weakened, Moody's downgraded Mexico's sovereign credit rating from A3 to Baa1 with a negative outlook, the ratings agency has reported. The key drivers behind the downgrade are Mexico's weakening economic growth prospects, the continued deterioration in PEMEX's financial and operational standing which is eroding the sovereign's fiscal strength, and a weakened policymaking and institutional capacity. “The Baa1 rating takes into account the country's large and diversified economy, the lack of significant macroeconomic imbalances, and its fiscal strength,” Moody's detailed in a statement.
Fitch downgrades PEMEX’s rating
Fitch Ratings cut PEMEX’s rating from BB to BB- with a stable outlook. This is the second time that the NOC’s note is downgraded in this month. The rating agency also lowered Federal Electricity Commission’s (CFE) note to BBB-. “PEMEX and CFE's rating downgrades reflect these companies' direct linkage to Mexico's sovereign ratings,” according to Fitch. The agency explained PEMEX's ratings are three notches below those of the sovereign amid the downturn in the global oil industry. “PEMEX's deterioration reflects the company's limited flexibility to navigate the downturn in the oil and gas industry, given its elevated tax burden, high leverage, rising per-barrel lifting costs and high investment needs to maintain production and replenish reserves”.
SHCP highlights investment grade
Despite rating agencies having reduced the country's sovereign's rating, Mexico still maintains the investment grade and has access to financing in national and international markets under favorable conditions, the Finance Ministry (SHCP) has reported. “The institutional and economic foundations of our country are solid and the government of Mexico has deployed a strategy to mitigate the health and economic effects of COVID-19, which will support the economic recovery within a framework of fiscal prudence,” the agency stated. SCHP highlighted that domestic and foreign investors keep a strong demand for government debt instruments in all their terms and modalities.
Gov. Bonilla questions pandemic figures
Baja California Gov. Jaime Bonilla questioned the death figures released in Mexico City by Deputy Minister of Healthy Hugo López-Gatell, claiming that 72 patients have died in the northern state and not the 31 recorded in the official report. “I ask the experts who are working on this information, experts in quotation marks. Why do they report information that is not real? As governor, I am going to demand that they give the truthful information about Baja California. Why only 31 (deaths)? We reported that figure a week ago,” Bonilla asked the Baja California’s Health Secretary Alonso Pérez Rico.
Stock markets end a good week
After a trading session marked by investor optimism due to the reports of a possible effective treatment for COVID-19, the main stock markets posted gains of nearly 3 percent at the end of the week. In New York, the Dow Jones index rose 2.99 percent to 24,242.49 units, accumulating a 2.21 percent rise for the week. S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed the day with gains of 2.68 and 1.38 percent, respectively. The Mexican stock market also closed Friday´s operations with strong gains. The benchmark BMV IPC index registered an advance of 2.91 percent to 34,743.1 points, while FTSE BIVA gained 2.69 percent to reach 709.15 points.