• Country Risk1 300Brazil – important legislative victories for Ms. Rousseff; Denmark – a rosier economic picture;
  • Guatemala – the political crisis is widening; Mexico – downward revision of growth expectations;
  • Sweden – the markets are testing the Riksbank;
  • Venezuela – the bolivar heads for the basement.

GUINEA: The economy has been hard hit by the effects of Ebola. Even with outside help it will take much time to overcome the setback. This year there is likely to be next to no growth, as the political climate will not be helpful ahead of elections.

HUNGARY: The authorities have responded to the April decline in prices with vows that they will ease monetary conditions further. The budget draft for 2016 provides for cuts in banking and income taxes. Prime Minister Orban has made it clear that he has no desire to become President but will seek a fourth term as Premier in 2018.

ITALY: Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has made good progress, more than any of the pundits predicted, in fulfilling his promise to revive the economy and to shake up the country’s creaking political system. The economy is growing again and a new political structure is starting to shape up. Much will depend on the outcome of the regional elections to be held at the end of this month.

KAZAKHSTAN: While Pres. Nazarbayev won re-election last month, this has stimulated rather than quieted talk about possible succession problems. The economy cannot escape the ill influences bedeviling it from abroad and eventually the tenge will undoubtedly have to be devalued again.

PHILIPPINES: Investors are troubled by Pres. Aquino’s losses in public approval ratings as the next presidential elections are less than a year away. Relations with China could improve, though, if one of the currently front-running candidates makes it to the top.

POLAND: The outcome of the presidential elections gave the opposition a clear victory, but it was not the huge “shift to the Right” as which many commentators presented it. The odds have increased that the Law and Justice party will now win the parliamentary poll, but it is to the Right of the Civic Platform only in some respects.

SINGAPORE: The economy expanded more than originally estimated in the first three months of this year, but the outlook remains uncertain because of the environment in which the City State has to operate and on which its fortunes depend. Also, Singapore has to deal with an aging population and receding numbers of immigrants.

SPAIN: It now appears that the era of a duopoly of dominant establishment parties is over and that national politics in Spain will remain considerably more fragmented than used to be the case. the incumbent Popular Party will have to work hard to highlight its economic accomplishments and down

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