Nearly one-third of Argentina’s population lives in poverty, the government said on Wednesday in the first official poverty data published in three years, underscoring the difficulty of reaching President Mauricio Macri’s stated “zero poverty” goal. The ranks of the poor surveyed in Argentina totaled 8.8 million people, or 32.2% of the population in 31 urban areas surveyed.
An Argentine average household made up of a couple with two children 6 and 8 years old needs 12.489 Pesos (approx US$ 820) to remain above the poverty line according to the stats office, Indec estimate for the month of August. The same household will have to pay 5.176 Pesos (approx US$ 340) for the Basic food basket, not to drop to indigence.
An IMF mission started on Monday a round of meetings with the purpose of rebuilding relations with Argentina, frozen for over a decade. The mission headed by economist Roberto Cardarelli began early Monday visiting the Argentine Industrial Union, UIA, the country's manufacturers main lobby.
Inflation in Argentina during the current month of August could drop to 0.7% because of the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the hikes in natural gas prices for residential users, according to the official stats office Indec. Similar stats also indicate a strong contraction of the Argentine economy.
President Mauricio Macri expressed concern that Argentina's employment rate barely exceeds 40% and criticized previous administrations for creating 750,000 government jobs to hide what he said was its inability to grow the economy.
Argentina had 9.3% unemployment in the second quarter of the year, the government's Indec statistics agency said in a report on Tuesday. It was the first official unemployment data to be published by Argentina since Mauricio Macri became president in December.
Argentina's inflation rate eased to 2% in July, less than half of what it was two months before when the government began reporting consumer price data after revamping the country's troubled statistics office. The July figure was released on Friday by the new Indec data agency. A month earlier it reported 3.1% inflation for June and 4.2% for May when it issued its first consumer price report since President Mauricio Macri took office in December.
Argentina released inflation figures for the first time since December last year, when newly elected president Mauricio Macri suspended the publication of economic data and intervened the official stats office, Indec, following long standing claims of manipulation by his predecessor.
Argentina's industrial output contracted 6.7% in April compared with the same month last year, the country's newly revamped Indec statistics agency said, punctuating the effect of recent fiscal austerity measures.
Argentina's economy grew 0.8% on the first quarter of the year compared to the same period last year, Central Bank Governor Federico Sturzenegger said, declaring that since President Mauricio Macri took office employment has remained “stable.”