Report of the ECLAC Washington Office
From the document:
Divergence in macro trends and in monetary policy in advanced economies was a dominant driver of rates and currencies in emerging markets in 2014. Diverging macroeconomic developments were reflected in different monetary policy actions in 2014, with the European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Ja apan (BOJ) moving in the opposite direction of the U.S. Federal Reserve.
The unwinding of the U.S. monetary stimulus, while the ECB and the BOJ step up their monetary stimulus, has underpinned an appreciation by the U.S. dollar, in which most commodities are priced. Latin American markets, which started the year under pressure from fears of the U.S. Federal Reserve tapering off its quantitative easing program and concerns over stability, ended 2014 under pressure from a stronger U.S. dollar.
However, there are many signs that a slowdown in LAC financial markets – particularly debt markets, which have been breaking records in debt issuance for the past six years – is under way. The region’s growth prospects look somewhat brighter in 2015 relative to 2014, but a strengthening U.S. dollar, uneven global growth and weakness in commodity prices are skewing the risk toward the downside for the 2015 forecasts across the region.