The NAFTA Play: Investing In Mexico In 2012

Includes: EWW, MEXS, SMK
by: Emerging Money

Mexico continues to be the most U.S.-dependent economy in Latin America and will probably lag the rest of the region because of the relationship.

The macroeconomic picture remains fairly positive as the recent depreciation in the peso has helped exports while inflation remains under control.

Oil exports continue to be a significant percentage of fiscal revenues, but this sets the economy up for volatility should energy prices fall.

For these reasons, combined with uncertainty around the mid-year elections, investors may want to take a neutral position relative to other countries in the region.

Although valuations have come down, with a drop of 13.0% in the iShares MSCI Mexico Investable Market Index (NYSEARCA:EWW) over the last year, equities in the fund are still trading at around 15 times trailing earnings.