The Day at a Glance | December 17 2020

The Top

· US Congress adjusts some details for a $900 billion dollar fiscal package.

· Monetary policy decision in Mexico`s Central Bank (1:00 pm Mexico City time).

· FED keeps interest rates and purchasing program unchanged.

· PMIs show mixed readings in the United States during December: Manufacturing activities increased (56.5 vs 55.7 e.), and services recede due to the virus`s spread (55.3 vs 55.7 e.).

· Economic indicators: Jobless claims in the US surprisingly increase to their highest level in 3 months (885k vs 800k e.).

Economic environment

US Congress representatives are close to reaching a fiscal package worth $900 billion dollars, according to most recent reports. After months of negotiations, legislators from both parties are close to approving a new package in order to provide aid, which would include checks for citizens worth between $600 and $700 dollars, extended unemployment benefits ($300 weekly), resources for the distribution of vaccines and aid to small businesses affected by COVID-19 ($330 billion). The package will be part of another project that seeks to guarantee government funding for the new fiscal year and avoid a shutdown in the public sector. Legislators have pledged to approve a new package before the end of 2020 and must do so before Friday in order to comply with legislative timelines. Recent comments suggest that there is optimism among legislators, even though there still won`t be any voting as there are several issues that need to be resolved. It`s been decided that aid to state and local governments will be left out (a priority for Democrats) but some legislators have asked for a change in extending the FEDs program, which guarantees resources to these governments, something that has brought back some friction. Republicans have left their ambition to include legal protection for companies against COVID-19 lawsuits. There are talks about possibly extending negotiations by 2 or 3 days in order to reach an agreement this weekend.

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