The Day at a Glance | December 1 2023

*The North American real estate market continues to show signs of weakness in October, this time with the figures for pending home sales.

*According to Bloomberg, the Council of Representatives of the National Minimum Wage Commission (Conasami) agreed to increase the minimum wage to 248.93 pesos per day for 2024.

*In Mexico, the Ministry of Finance reported that during the period January-October, tax revenue grew by 10.3% in real terms, the highest rate of change since 2016.

*The Caixin Manufacturing PMI for China surprisingly rose in November to 50.7 units, exceeding the market’s expectation of 49.6 and up from a previous reading of 49.5 points.

*After seven days of ceasefire, Israeli forces resumed combat operations in Gaza with the launch of an airstrike after accusing Hamas of firing toward Israel and breaking the agreement that allowed the exchange of hostages for prisoners.

*Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken commented that Israel needs to make greater efforts to protect civilians in Gaza.

Economic environment

The pending home sales index in the U.S. has fallen to its lowest level in over two decades. The high-interest rates in the U.S. economy in October impacted the North American real estate market by pushing the interest rate for 30-year mortgage loans above 7.50% in October. Consequently, the pending home sales index, which considers houses for which a purchase contract has already been signed but the transaction has not yet been completed, dropped to 71.4 units in October, its lowest level since 2001. However, it should be noted that this drop in sales was uneven, with a decrease in the Midwest (-0.4% m/m), South (-1.9% m/m), and West (-6.0% m/m), but growing in the Northeast by 2.7% m/m. Finally, while the notable decrease in interest rates in recent weeks could help increase housing affordability in the U.S., influencing more potential buyers to qualify for home acquisition; the limited number of available homes could limit meeting this increased demand.

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