In 2017, several of the most important macro-economic trends from the prior year continued to drive the financial markets in Latin America, but with a shifting emphasis. Movement in currency exchange rates and commodity prices, sovereign developments, and the emergence of a middle-class in many countries continued to be major factors; however, the effect of these continuing trends was exacerbated by the volatility created by upcoming elections in several countries and the impact of the U.S. position on trade, most notably the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) (as discussed in more detail below). Many of these macro- economic forces intersect in the various Latin American countries with different effect. This article contains a brief analysis of the four largest Latin American economies in 2017 and a market outlook for 2018.
This article was originally published in Lexis Nexis