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A region braces for the US slowdown

For the first time in almost a decade Latin America’s faithful companion – a strong US economy – will be absent this year. It’s an eventuality that the finance ministers and central bank governors of Latin America have been worrying about for years. They have fretted over how their economies will respond to reduced demand from American importers and how their finances might be disrupted by collapsing confidence and increased risk-aversion in the US. Yet with America’s astonishing growth finally appearing to falter, private-sector capital has flowed abundantly since the start of 2001. Perhaps investors into the region are just taking a short-term view on US interest rates. Political risks remain the medium-term worry.

Mohammed El-Erian

The US Federal Reserve's aggressive easing of US interest rates this year has greatly improved the reception of Latin American issuers in international bond markets.

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