Latest News

Barbados Still in Recession Published: 03 May 2019

  • Barbados remains in recession, with the economy contracting by an estimated 0.2 percent in the first quarter. This was primarily due to weakness in the non-trading sector, particularly construction.
  • And while economic growth is predicted to be no more than 0.25 per cent this year, Central Bank Governor Cleviston Haynes says he believes the island can achieve the “spurt in growth” it needs.
  • He also announced that a team from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will be in Barbados next week to check the progress of the economic reforms, as Government prepares to receive another US$49 million from the Fund.

 (Source: NationNews)

Dominican Republic GDP Increases by 5.9% to US$7,918 Published: 03 May 2019

  • The GDP per capita rose by 5.9% at year-end 2018, standing at US$7,917, according to data from Dominican Republic’s Central Bank.
  • It’s the highest increase in the last seven years, in line with the Dominican economy’s growth in that period, which is more moderate, although constant.
  • The growth of the economy at the end of last year was 6.9%, according to the most recent data from the World Bank.

(Source: Dominica Today)

U.S. Jobs Report May See Boost From Temporary Hiring for Census Published: 03 May 2019

  • The U.S. jobs report Friday in Washington should show a temporary boost to hiring for the 2020 Census, while Bloomberg Economics sees promise in the Federal Reserve’s bet that economic weakness is temporary, analysis shows.
  • The median expectation from economists is for an increase of 190,000 positions in April, with average hourly earnings gaining 3.3% from a year earlier.
  • Unemployment is expected to remain unchanged from March at 3.8% when the data is published at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time. 

(Source: Bloomberg)

Euro-Area Inflation Accelerates After String of Upbeat Data Published: 03 May 2019

  • Consumer prices in the euro area rose 1.7% in April, the strongest since November, with core inflation, which strips out volatile food and fuel prices, jumping to 1.2%.
  • Both readings beat economists’ estimates, and coupled with other recent more-positive-than-expected economic data for the region can be seen as good news for European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, who was resisting adding more stimulus. 
  • Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann said in a speech ahead of today’s numbers that “much suggests that the economy is only experiencing a temporary weak phase and will pick up speed again after its soft patch.”

 (Source: Bloomberg)

World Bank Impressed with Jamaica’s Macroeconomic Achievements Published: 02 May 2019

  • Newly appointed World Bank Vice President for Latin America and the Caribbean, Axel van Trostenburg, says Jamaica’s macroeconomic achievements, to date, have been “extremely impressive”.
  • “I don’t know any country that has achieved, over a sustained period of time, the fiscal adjustments and reforms as Jamaica has done, and produced a most spectacular reduction of its debt level that reached almost 150%, to fall, this year, below 100%,” he said.
  • He was speaking at a media briefing at the Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) on Tuesday April 30, to announce an additional US$140Mn World Bank loan provision for Jamaica.
  • The funds will bolster the Government’s efforts to strengthen Jamaica’s resilience risks associated with natural disasters, as well as support human capital development and enhance the social safety net for the society’s most vulnerable citizens.

 (Source: JIS)

Mayberry Investments Records fall-off in Profit for Q1 Published: 02 May 2019

  • For the three months ended March 31, 2019, Mayberry Investments Limited reported a net loss of $196.7Mn (EPS: -$0.13) which represents a significant fall off (-182%) from the $239.4Mn (EPS: $0.20) reported a year prior.
  • The deterioration in performance is partly attributable to an increase in operating expenses (+25%) as well as net trading losses of $47.9Mn relative to net trading gains reported in 2018 of $209.9Mn. Fees and commission income also declined by 50.4% to $104.8Mn relative to the $211.4Mn recorded in the corresponding period of 2018.
  • The stock has fallen 4.06% since the start of the calendar year and closed at $8.75 yesterday. It currently trades at a P/B of 0.57x earnings which is below the Main Market Financial sector average of 1.73x.

 (Source: Mayberry Financials)

Wisynco’s Records Strong Growth in Profit Published: 02 May 2019

  • Wisynco reported an unaudited net profit of $2.2Bn (EPS: $0.60) for the nine-month period ending March 31, 2019, which represents a 28.9% increase relative to the $1.7Bn (EPS: $0.48) reported in 2018. 
  • The improvement in performance was partly attributable to a 15.4% increase in revenues, up from $18.1Bn the prior year to $20.8Bn this year. Additionally, there was an increase (+25.3%) in finance income, which finished the period at $63.4Mn.
  • The stock has risen 27.51% since the start of the calendar year and closed at $13.95 yesterday. It currently trades at a P/E of 18.85x earnings which is slightly above the Main Market Manufacturing & Distribution sector average of 18.27x.

 (Source: Wisynco Financials)

Pay Day for Many People in Barbados Published: 02 May 2019

  • As of today, pensioners and other holders of Government paper will start getting monthly payments as Government seeks to reduce its national debt.
  • The Minister explained the payments are a follow on to lump-sum payments made last year and that the action was in keeping with what the ministry had promised in the mini-Budget of June last year.
  • Minister of Finance, Ryan Straughn explained: “The debt of the country is one of those areas where you have to be constantly addressing in order to keep the economy stable. These commitments I believe will provide greater levels of stability. We will be well on our way to reducing the debt to GDP to 60% over the next 14 years.”

 (Source: Barbados Today)

Aruba Inflation expected to moderate over the Next Decade Published: 02 May 2019

  • Inflation will moderate over Fitch’s 10-year forecast period, as a surge in 2018 fades on more modest economic growth. 
  • However, Aruba is unlikely to return to the deflationary conditions seen from 2015 to 2017, as stronger tourist arrivals and potentially investment at the country's oil refinery stimulate domestic demand.
  • The Central Bank van Aruba is likely to maintain its currency peg to the US dollar, anchoring imported inflationary pressures, tamping down headline price growth. 

(Source: Fitch Solutions)

Powell Brushes Aside Rate-Cut Pressure with Confidence on Prices Published: 02 May 2019

  • Yesterday’s Fed decision and press conference from Chair Jerome Powell pushed back against increasing speculation the bank’s next rate move could be a cut.
  • The one thing that remains clear is that U.S. monetary policymakers are happy to do nothing at all right now, as they view the current stance as “appropriate.”
  • There will be excitement, however, if there’s any evidence of a brewing hawkish tilt in the minutes. Investors are more likely to concentrate on tomorrow’s payrolls report and amuse themselves with corporate earnings in the meantime.

(Source: Bloomberg)