Mexico Peso Drops as Global Growth Concern Damps Export Outlook

Mexico’s peso dropped as signs of a stalled global recovery damped the outlook for the Latin American country’s exports.

The currency depreciated 0.1 percent to 12.6110 per U.S. dollar at 4 p.m. in Mexico City. The loss pared the currency’s advance this year to 1.9 percent, still the most among 16 major currencies tracked by Bloomberg.

The peso fell as reports showed manufacturing in the New York region contracted for a sixth straight month and that Germany’s economy probably shrank last quarter. Mexico depends on exports for about 30 percent of its gross domestic product, and sends 80 percent of them to its northern neighbor.

“The market was waiting for an excuse to sell,” Mario Copca, a currency and fixed-income strategist at Metanalisis SA in Mexico City, said in a telephone interview. U.S. manufacturing data “is what most influences and affects us.”

Mounting concern about political wrangling over the U.S. debt ceiling is also weighing on the peso, according to Eduardo Suarez, a Latin American currency strategist at Bank of Nova Scotia in Toronto. President Barack Obama has vowed he won’t negotiate over raising the U.S. debt ceiling as he offered to consider separately the deficit cuts demanded by Republicans.

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s general economic index fell to minus 7.8 in January from a revised minus 7.3 in December. The median forecast of 54 economists in a Bloomberg survey called for a reading of zero, which signals no change in conditions. Readings of less than zero signal contraction in New York, northern New Jersey and southern Connecticut.

Germany’s gross domestic product may have dropped as much as 0.5 percent in the last three months of 2012 from the third quarter, the Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden said today in a preliminary estimate.

Yields on fixed-rated peso bonds due in 2024 fell four basis points, or 0.04 percentage point, to 5.41 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The price rose 0.42 centavo to 140.28 centavos per peso.

Mexico sold all 5 billion pesos ($396 million) of 28-day cetes that it offered at auction today, according to the central bank. It also the Finance Ministry sold all of the 7 billion pesos of 91-day notes and all 9 billion pesos of the 175-day bills that it auctioned.

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