- The International Monetary Fund said in a statement Tuesday that it would “soon” send a team to Argentina.
- The statement came after the new economy minister said the government would do everything possible to stabilize the currency, following the August 11 primary-election result that rocked domestic markets.
- The IMF had planned to visit Argentina this week to complete a review as part of its disbursement process for a $56 billion loan to the country.
- Read more on Markets Insider.
The International Monetary Fund said Tuesday that it was monitoring the situation in Argentina and would “soon” send a staff team to the country.
Argentina was pushed closer to the brink of a financial crisis following the August 11 primary election in which President Mauricio Macri unexpectedly lost to the left-leaning candidate Alberto Fernandez and his running mate, former President Cristina Kirchner. Argentine currency and bonds slid, while the stock market suffered its second-largest drop in global history.
“We are closely following recent developments in Argentina and are in ongoing dialogue with the authorities as they work on their policy plans to address the difficult situation that the country is facing,” Gerry Rice, an IMF spokesperson, said in a statement Tuesday.
The statement came after Argentina’s new economy minister Hernan Lacunza was sworn in, according to Bloomberg. In his first press release as minister, Lacunza said the Argentine government is using all available tools to keep the Argentine peso within a range of 45.2 to 60.4 pesos per dollar, Bloomberg reported.
The Argentine peso gained slightly to 54.85 against the dollar, up from a low of 60 on Tuesday. The S&P Merval Index fell further, now down 74% from its trading price before the August 11 market rout.
On Monday, Fitch Ratings and S&P Global Ratings downgraded the country’s credit to junk because of the increased risk of sovereign-debt default. Investors around the world are worried that if Fernandez is elected in October, he will attempt to renegotiate the country’s debt obligations with the IMF. Fernandez has also given very few glimpses of his economic plans for the country.
An IMF team had been scheduled to travel to Argentina this week as a part of the review process to approve the latest disbursement of its record $56 billion loan to the country, Bloomberg reported.
Lacunza said that he had spoken with IMF officials by phone after he was sworn into office, Bloomberg reported. In addition, he said that he has plans to meet with economic advisers of the opposing political parties to avoid public comments that could shake the fragile economy, Bloomberg reported.