Funerals for Americans killed in Mexico ambush draw thousands

Last Updated Nov 7, 2019 7:27 PM EST

Under tight security Thursday, hundreds of people gathered for the first funeral for the nine American women and children killed in an ambush in Mexico this week. A mother and her two sons were laid to rest, and more will be buried in the coming days.

The first victims of the ambush to be laid to rest were carried in coffins handmade by relatives, tailored to the small bodies of those who are gone: 2-year-old Rogan, 11-year-old Trevor and their mother, Dawna Langford, were buried. The six others will be laid to rest in their home towns.

Outside the funeral, there was a heavy police presence.

The horror of the massacre is palpable in voice messages family member Kendra Lee Miller sent to others. The messages were first obtained by CNN.

“Dear God, everybody pray. Officers just came and said my mom’s suburban is blown up, up on the — by the hill.  Everyone, please pray,” they said. “Dear God, pray for us all.”

Robert LeBaron traveled for the funerals. “If we can’t protect our women and children, you’re no longer a country,” he said. 

While Mexican officials believe the attack was a case of mistaken identity in a shootout between rival cartels, some family members — who say they’ve been threatened before — believe they were targeted.

For the eight children who survived the attack, the physical healing will come before the emotional. Family members released a video of 9-month-old Brixton, who is recovering from a shot to the chest and a grazed wrist. Seven-month-old Faith, who lost her mother in the attack, is now back with her father.

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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DHS: Migrants along entire border can now be returned to Mexico

The Trump administration said Friday it can now return most migrants who express fear of persecution to Mexico regardless of where U.S. officials encountered them along the U.S.-Mexico border. It’s the latest attempt to effectively end a system President Trump and other immigration hardliners have criticized as “catch and release.”

The Department of Homeland Security announced it has “effectively” implemented the controversial Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program, also known as “Remain in Mexico,” along the entire U.S.-Mexico border. Under the policy, which is being challenged in court, the administration has required nearly 50,000 asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for months while their cases are processed in the U.S.

A Homeland Security spokesperson acknowledged to CBS News that returns and court hearings of migrants placed in the “Remain in Mexico” program occur at or near five ports of entry along the international border California and Texas share with Mexico. Homeland Security oversees the Customs and Border Protection agents who have returned tens of thousands asylum seekers to Mexico.    

But the spokesperson said U.S. border officials can transport migrants in their custody across different sectors to subject them to the policy and return them Mexico, as long as the Mexican government has “indicated capacity to accept” them.

“Therefore, MPP processing is an option for virtually all apprehensions or encounters across the Southwest Border,” the spokesperson added. 

ap-19243709698726.jpg
On August 24, 2019, immigration lawyers working with the Atlanta-based group Lawyers for Good Government, attempted to inform hundreds of asylum seekers of their legal rights after they had been sent back to Matamoros, as part of the Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” program. Michael Nigro

Since being implemented in San Diego at the end of 2018, the “Remain in Mexico” program has been implemented to the border sectors near Calexico, California and the Texas border communities of El Paso, Laredo and Brownsville. 

The administration implemented the “Remain in Mexico” policy in Laredo and Brownsville after the Mexican government, threatened by potential tariffs, agreed to the policy’s expansion earlier in the summer. Since then, the U.S. has erected makeshift courts out of tents and shipping containers to hold hearings for migrants returned near those two border cities in south Texas. 

CBS News series detailed how the program has placed vulnerable migrants, including families with small children and single women, in precarious situations during their prolonged stays in dangerous border cities in northern Mexico, where the chances of finding and securing American lawyers are slim


CBS News series on “Remain in Mexico”


Along with criticism from Democrats and immigrant advocates, the policy has also been denounced by some of the very asylum officers interviewing migrants in the program, which they believe undermines obligations America has to refugees under both domestic and international law. 

Immigration hardliners and some government officials have long attacked the practice of releasing apprehended migrants, mostly families with children or individuals seeking asylum, who crossed the southern border illegally but otherwise don’t have criminal records. Under this system, denounced by critics as a “loophole” that incentivizes economic migration, migrants who have extra legal protections are typically detained for a few days or weeks, and then released to local shelters with a notice to appear in immigration court.   

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan on Monday pledged to effectively abolish this system starting next week. His agency has said that this would be partly accomplished by “generally” placing all families who claim fear in MPP and returning them Mexico. 

There are certain humanitarian exceptions for the program and the U.S. government has generally only returned non-Mexican Spanish-speaking migrants to Mexico, meaning that officials will likely not be able to place all migrants who express fear in the MPP policy. 

Under this effort, McAleenan said those who do not claim fear will be streamlined for deportation. 

To further deter migrants, the administration is also hoping to employ controversial asylum agreements it has recently reached with countries in Central America. In addition, officials are looking to enforce a regulation allowed by the Supreme Court that renders most migrants ineligible for asylum if they traveled through a third country to reach the U.S.-Mexico border.  

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Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru eye bond for extreme weather: minister

By Marco Aquino

LIMA (Reuters) – Mexico, Colombia, Chile and Peru plan to work with the World Bank to launch a new bond to cover losses in the event of extreme weather, Peru’s finance minister said on Friday.

The bond would be similar to a $ 1.36 billion earthquake bond that the four countries sold last year through the Pacific Alliance regional bloc they are part of, said the minister, Carlos Oliva.

“What we’re going to do is design a new bond that’s not just for earthquakes, but for hydrometeorological events, climate, the el Nino phenomena,” Oliva told Reuters on the sidelines of an event at the Pacific Alliance summit Peru hosts this week.

Oliva said it was too early to estimate a pricetag for the bond but added it “has to be similar” to the earthquake bond.

“The model for doing this takes time and the World Bank is helping us with that,” he said.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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Trump threats drive historic Brazil, Mexico currency divergence

Trump threats drive historic Brazil, Mexico currency divergence Trump threats drive historic Brazil, Mexico currency divergence

By Jamie McGeever

BRASILIA (Reuters) – The fate of Latin America’s two main currencies have contrasted so much lately that traders and analysts are questioning whether Brazil’s real can keep rallying while the Mexican peso slides.

The two emerging market currencies usually move in tandem with each other, but foreign trade spats, domestic politics and economic data have driven them apart lately.

Many in the market are betting they will snap back in line, but some suggest an underlying shift in investor views.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s threat on May 30 to slap tariffs on Mexico may have tipped the balance for money managers to reduce the Mexican exposure in their Latin America funds, according to Standard Chartered (LON:) senior strategist Ilya Gofshteyn.

“While we expect some short-term recovery in Mexican risk assets, we believe that this episode has injected a more permanent risk premium into holding Mexican assets,” he told clients in a note.

“We believe investors may rotate out of the Mexican peso and into the Brazilian real as a result.”

The peso has been hit hard by a credit-rating downgrade in addition to U.S. trade tensions, while the real has rebounded from an eight-month low on hopes that Brazil’s government can pass an ambitious pension reform bill through Congress.

The peso fell as much as 5% in the last few weeks – it has since regained most of that ground since Trump said last Friday a deal had been struck with Mexico, although he has since revived the threat if Mexico cannot meet his demands – while Brazil’s real strengthened some 6% in the last three weeks.

The following charts show the extent to which traders have been laying opposite bets on the two currencies.

The first two show the simple 30-day correlation between the dollar/peso and dollar/real exchange rates, one overlayed with Brazil’s exchange rate and the other with Mexico’s. The correlation, almost always positive, has turned negative.

(GRAPHIC: Brazil-Mexico FX correlation – https://tmsnrt.rs/2XMIC4n)

(GRAPHIC: Brazil-Mexico FX Correlation – https://tmsnrt.rs/2IfYbfV)

Since their respective crises and devaluations in the mid- to late 1990s, the peso and real have almost always been positively correlated, rising or falling together.

The average correlation was +0.5 over the last five years, +0.52 over the last decade and +0.48 over the last 20 years.

A correlation of 1.0 is the strongest possible positive correlation, and -1.0 the strongest negative correlation. There have only been seven negative correlations in the past 20 years before the current one. All have lasted just days or weeks.

Four have marked the start of, or a reversal of, major trends for the real, sometimes lasting years. For example, after December 1999 the real embarked on a super-charged rally that took it above 4.00 per dollar in October 2002, while December 2015 marked the end of a similar surge lasting over four years.

Only one period of negative correlation between the two currencies has resulted in a similar move in the peso. That was in January 2017, when dollar/peso snapped back 20% over the following six months from its record high above 22.00.

Futures markets highlight the degree to which traders’ views on the two currencies have diverged.

The chart below shows the difference between hedge fund and speculators’ net peso and real positions on the U.S. futures markets. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission data reflect the speculative trading community’s bias in any given asset.

(GRAPHIC: Brazil-Mexico FX – CFTC futures – https://tmsnrt.rs/2IflZQN)

Last month, traders were more bullish on the Mexican peso relative to the Brazilian real than at any time since CFTC futures contracts in the Brazilian real were launched in 2011. The gap between net long peso positions and net short real positions reached 174,00 contracts, CFTC data show.

That has since eased off by around 20,000 contracts, but it is too early to say if this is a turning point or not.

There are two schools of thought as to what happens next.

In the first, Brazil’s pension reform process hits another hurdle as the economy tips into recession, killing the recent upturn in positive sentiment. Investors would then broadly avoid emerging markets as the U.S. economic slowdown takes hold, sending the real into the same doldrums as the Mexican peso.

In the second scenario, U.S.-Mexico relations sour and Trump makes good on his threat to slap hefty tariffs on imports from Mexico. At the same time, pension reform in Brazil passes, boosting growth and investor demand for Brazilian assets.

In that scenario, the divergence would continue, pushing the correlation between the two currencies even deeper into negative territory and the divergence in futures markets to new highs.

“If Brazil delivers, we will have a huge technical move with investors unwinding long dollar/Brazil positions,” said one senior trader in Sao Paulo.

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Trump says deal reached with Mexico – tariffs indefinitely suspended

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Trump’s Mexico Move a Double Plus for World: G-20 Finance Update

© Bloomberg. Mulyani Indrawati on June 8. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg © Bloomberg. Mulyani Indrawati on June 8. Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) — President Donald Trump’s decision to ditch plans for tariffs on Mexico is a clear positive for the world economy, according to Indonesian Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati and Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda.

Indrawati said the move also signaled a broader U.S. willingness to compromise on its trade conflict with China, describing it as “very plus plus” in an interview with Bloomberg Television in Fukuoka, Japan, where finance and central bank chiefs from the Group of 20 nations are meeting this weekend.

Speaking separately to reporters, Kuroda said the impact of Trump’s decision reached beyond the two countries involved and would be great for the global economy, though he cautioned that trade-related issues still loomed large on the list of uncertainties for the economic outlook.

The remarks came during a morning devoted to the challenges of raising tax from the digital economy, one of many questions on the minds of G-20 finance ministers and central bankers struggling to shore up growth amid trade tensions and a global slowdown.

Here’s a look at main themes emerging from the discussions:

TAXING TIMES

France’s finance minister Bruno Le Maire said there has to be an international solution to the taxation issue and that the world now has to grapple with how to measure digital activities and the sale, exchange and use of data.

Le Maire said G-7 countries will seek a compromise on digital taxation at their next meeting in July in France, which could form the basis of a system for other G-20 countries. Once there is a new system, France will scrap its own digital tax, which is based on turnover, taxing the exchange of data and advertising.

But reaching consensus won’t be easy.

“These are complicated issues in a changing environment and something I am sympathetic to,” said U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. He agreed on the urgency of addressing the matter but not all the ideas being suggested by his counterparts.

Earlier, the prospect of mouth watering new taxation revenues was dangled by OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria. He argued that a push for transparency in the international banking system has already yielded a bonanza in new tax revenue as money crossing borders is declared in a way it previously wasn’t.

Tax dodgers have “nowhere to hide” he told the audience of G-20 officials.

HEROIC BANKERS

“Central banks are heroes,” Gurria told Bloomberg Television in an interview. “The question is how much armory do they still have, how many bullets, particularly silver bullets?”

There’ll be plenty of one-on-one meetings over the weekend too, with the most anticipated being one planned between Mnuchin and China’s central bank chief Yi Gang. Whether the two countries can get beyond their current impasse will be keenly watched.

The G-20 finance group has gathered annually since 1999, with Japan taking presidency for the June 8-9 gathering.

The main players will hail from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States, and the European Union. Others will also attend, including officials from constituencies such as Singapore, Switzerland, as well as from multilateral organizations like the International Monetary Fund.

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ForexLive Americas FX news wrap: Mexico tariffs spark fear and a flight to safety

Forex news for North American trade on May 31, 2019:

Markets:

  • Gold up $ 17 to $ 1305
  • WTI crude down $ 3.22 to $ 53.37
  • US 10-year yields down 8.4 bps to 2.13%
  • S&P 500 down 37 points to 2752
  • JPY leads, CAD lags

It got ugly in the bond market after Trump announced escalating tariffs on Mexico related to the border. It was an old fashioned flight to quality with the yen and Swiss franc as the beneficiaries.

USD/JPY finished at the lows of the day in what was a steady bleed lower since rumors of the announcement started. The selling accelerated after reports said trade hawk Lighthizer was against the tariff announcement and that Stephen Miller was behind it. It’s a hint that hardliners increasingly have the President’s ear.

The euro and pound weren’t sure what to do with the news. They climbed initially then were hit by heavy selling into the London fix. However this is starting to look like more of a US problem than a European one and both currencies rebounded to finish near the best levels of the day.

The problem for the dollar is that bonds are now screaming for rate cuts. US 2-year yields looked like a capitulation trade as they sank 14 basis points to 1.92%. In turn, that was a big boost for gold and other safe assets.

The Canadian dollar wasn’t greatly affected by the GDP report. It was soft because of revisions to Jan-Feb but March was strong and forward-looking indications were solid. USD/CAD fell to 13516 from as high as 1.3565, which was a five-month high.

Rest up and get ready for another busy week. Have a great weekend.

Forex news for North American trade on May 31, 2019:

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Trump says it’s time for $100 billion trade deficit with Mexico to end

More on Mexico tariffs

I won’t claim to try to understand Trump but Mexico spent a year negotiating a free trade deal with Trump and they all shook hands on it.

Now Trump is tearing it up before it’s even ratified.

I assume it’s a bluff but it doesn’t send a great message about negotiating in good faith to anyone else who might want a trade deal with the US.

From Trump’s twitter:

90% of the Drugs coming into the United States come through Mexico & our Southern Border. 80,000 people died last year, 1,000,000 people ruined. This has gone on for many years & nothing has been done about it. We have a 100 Billion Dollar Trade Deficit with Mexico. It’s time!

ForexLive

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Mexico stocks post worst quarter in 17 years, government weighs

© Reuters. A worker cleans the glass doors of the building of Mexico's Stock Exchange in Mexico City © Reuters. A worker cleans the glass doors of the building of Mexico’s Stock Exchange in Mexico City

By Sheky Espejo and Miguel Gutierrez

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Mexico’s main stock index closed out its worst quarter in over 17 years on Monday, dragged down by doubts about how the new leftist government will manage the economy as well as concerns over global growth and trade.

The S&P/BMV IPC stock index () lost 15.89 percent in the fourth quarter, its steepest drop for a three-month period since the third quarter of 2001, when the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks hit the United States.

That quarter the market fell by nearly 19 percent.

Before taking office earlier this month, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador rattled financial markets when on Oct. 29 he said he would scrap a partly built $ 13 billion new Mexico City airport on the basis of a straw poll that was widely criticized.

The decision kicked off a dispute with some bondholders of debt issued to finance the airport and raised fears Lopez Obrador could pursue an agenda characterized by arbitrary decision-making and frequent use of referendums.

Market sentiment was also hammered by a bill drafted by Lopez Obrador’s National Regeneration Movement to limit bank fees and another to regulate the mining sector.

"Those decisions were not well received and the unease has persisted among investors," said James Salazar, economist at CI Banco.

After seesawing earlier on Monday, the index finally closed 0.44 percent higher at 41,640.27.

During the global financial crisis in the third quarter of 2008, the Mexican bourse fell 15.3 percent.

Global markets have been depressed this year by U.S. President Donald Trump’s trade dispute with China, uncertainty surrounding Britain’s planned departure from the European Union and more recently the U.S. federal government shutdown.

Mirroring falls in other major stock exchanges, Mexico’s main index posted its worst annual performance in 10 years, declining 15.63 percent in 2018.

Still, the index has steadied in the last few weeks, having fallen well below the 40,000 level in late November.

The market will likely continue to move "laterally" during the first half of 2019 until it becomes clearer how Lopez Obrador is managing public finances, said Jorge Placido, an analyst at brokerage Vector Casa de Bolsa.

"Investors are willing to pay and stick around until there is more clarity about the economy," said Placido.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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U.S., Mexico, Canada ministers to sign trade pact Nov. 30, official says

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The flags of Canada, Mexico and the U.S. are seen on a lectern before a joint news conference on the closing of the seventh round of NAFTA talks in Mexico City © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The flags of Canada, Mexico and the U.S. are seen on a lectern before a joint news conference on the closing of the seventh round of NAFTA talks in Mexico City

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Cabinet ministers from the United States, Mexico and Canada will sign a new trade agreement on Nov. 30, Mexico’s economy minister said on Thursday.

The deal will be signed in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo told reporters at an event in Mexico City. Argentina is hosting the G20 international forum for governments and central bank governors.

It was yet to be determined whether the presidents and prime minister will participate in the signing, Guajardo said.

"What’s clear is that the signing will take place on Nov. 30," Guajardo said.

After more than a year of negotiations to revamp the North American Free Trade Agreement, the United States and Canada reached a last-gasp deal in September. Mexico and the United States had already struck a bilateral agreement.

Legislators from the three countries still have to approve the pact, officially known as the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), before it goes into effect.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.

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