Guatemala Economic Forecast

Guatemala Economic Outlook

March 12, 2019

Available data for Q1 is fairly positive. The private sector seemingly got off to a good start in January with growth in the economic activity index picking up pace and private sector credit growing at the second-quickest pace in two-and-a-half years. However, remittances growth has cooled, with average growth in January–February trending markedly below the reading observed in the fourth quarter of last year. In addition, the merchandise trade deficit widened in January on a drop in exports and robust imports. This follows a fourth quarter in which the economy is expected to have performed well on the back of the domestic side of the economy. Remittances growth was strong in the quarter and the economic activity index edged up. However, the trade deficit widened in the quarter. Moreover, the economy accelerated over last year as a whole according to a preliminary estimate.

Guatemala Economic Growth

Domestic demand is expected to continue driving economic growth, powered by a pick-up in fixed investment and public expenditure ahead of the June presidential election. However, uncertainty over U.S. immigration laws remains a key downside risk to remittances, while rising domestic political risk prior to the election could dent consumer and investor confidence. Met the why particular Consensus Forecast panelists expect the Guatemalan economy to expand 3.1% in 2019 which is unchanged from last month’s forecast, and 3.0% in 2020.

Guatemala Economy Data

Population (million)15.615.916.316.616.9
GDP per capita (USD)3,4633,6653,9384,1264,467
GDP (USD bn)54.058.464.068.475.6
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)
Consumption (annual variation in %)
Investment (annual variation in %)
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-2.1-1.9-1.4-1.1-1.4
Public Debt (% of GDP)24.624.724.324.223.9
Money (annual variation in %)
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)
Policy Interest Rate (%)
Exchange Rate (vs USD)7.847.607.637.527.35
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)7.867.747.667.607.35
Current Account (% of GDP)-2.6-2.1-
Current Account Balance (USD bn)-1.4-1.2-
Trade Balance (USD billion)-6.2-6.1-5.6-5.2-6.0
Exports (USD billion)
Imports (USD billion)16.417.116.415.817.1
Exports (annual variation in %)1.07.8-1.8-2.05.1
Imports (annual variation in %)3.84.3-4.1-3.98.5
International Reserves (USD)
External Debt (% of GDP)31.933.131.631.0-  

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Guatemala Facts

Exchange Rate7.690.22 %Mar 11

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