Can Javier Milei's victory pull Argentina out of the hole?

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BATS:MELI   MercadoLibre, Inc.
Argentina has not been doing well for some time, holding the second-largest economy in South America, behind only Brazil. It has been suffering from poor policies that have harmed the country's macroeconomy. Not only that, but it seems that all of Latin America has fallen into the hands of progressives, enthusiasts of communist parties, and also dealing with drug trafficking in countries like Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, and Ecuador. When Javier Milei won the elections in Argentina, this could have been significant. The neighboring country is hostage to a left-wing ideology that refuses to transact in American currency, which many consider absurd, as the foreign currency is the strongest in the world, while the local currency is considered one of the worst. The reason is high inflation, reaching around 100%, the devaluation of the internal exchange rate, which is even advocated by these politicians, but in practice has increased the cost of imports and the payment of external debt.

Here we can observe a chart of the performance of the US dollar against the national currency

And we can see that the situation is so absurd that not even the Argentinians themselves believe it, as a significant portion of the population dollarizes their capital to avoid the effects of high inflation and interest rates. In addition, there is a political crisis, low credibility of the Argentine government for a long time, low international reserves, high-interest bonds with near maturities, making it difficult to repay debt, and a high outflow of foreign investment, reducing the influx of dollars. This happens because the leaders of the Platine Republic are anti-foreign currency, proving once again how absurd this scenario is. If we stop to think for a moment, we know that the powerhouse is a global reference when it comes to having a strong economy, good numbers, and not just for that. The US dollar is a reserve currency, representing 60% of global reserves. Over 70% of the forex market is currency exchange, and the main currencies in the world are traded against the foreign currency. The US dollar is also a benchmark for other assets such as metals, commodities, oil, stocks (since the two largest stock exchanges in the world, NYSE and NASDAQ, move dollars every day), and even bitcoin itself, which has the most traded parity in the world against the US dollar. Remembering that the Argentine public machinery is very rigid.

Some advantages of dollarization are:

*Protecting the nation from exchange rate speculation, which can cause instability and devaluation of the national currency;

*Safeguarding the state's macroeconomic indicators, such as inflation, from more serious deteriorations, as foreign money tends to be more stable and reliable;

*Sharing the benefits of stability in the value of the foreign currency against the national currency, which can increase the p
urchasing power of citizens and stimulate territorial economic growth;

*Reducing transaction costs for trade between countries that use the same currency, facilitating commercial and financial relations.

Some disadvantages of dollarization are:

*Losing the ability to influence its own monetary policy, i.e., losing financial autonomy. This means that the state can no longer control its interest rate, money supply, and exchange rate, becoming dependent on the economic policy of the issuer of the foreign currency;

*Making the process complex and difficult to reverse in the future, in addition to implying a high cost for its implementation.

*The territory needs to have sufficient reserves of the US dollar to ensure the conversion of the national currency and to face possible economic shocks;

*Preventing monetary authorities from acting as lenders of last resort to commercial banks in a scenario with complete replacement of money. This means that the nation can no longer bail out banks in times of crisis or insolvency, increasing the risk of the financial system's bankruptcy;

*Exposing the country to fluctuations in the foreign currency against other currencies, which can negatively affect some sectors of productive activity.

Now elected, we know that the liberal leader will face various difficulties and obstacles to make the Platine Republic recover, as not only it but all of Latin America, including Brazil, has adopted policies that do not please investors and economists. The proposal to adopt the world's strongest currency as the official currency may face significant obstacles, as the crisis-ridden economy faces many problems. However, it could help reduce inflation, which could reach 100%, also end high-interest rates, investor and international creditor confidence, and also facilitate access to and repayment of external debt, which represents 70% of the Argentine GDP, in addition to stimulating economic growth and productivity, eliminating exchange distortions and capital controls. In addition, it implies the total loss of autonomy of its central bank to regulate the money supply and interest rate according to the needs of the economy. In theory, this is concerning, but in practice, considering the amateurism of management in Latin America, it is much better to have the confidence of the Federal Reserve than to rely on political appointments, as the South American nation does not have an autonomous central bank.

Society faces various problems that concern the population and the rulers, such as the abyss, poverty, exchange rate dependence, external debt, political instability, and climate change. These problems result from a long history of economic crises that have marked Argentina since the 20th century. The neighboring country not only survives on crises because even adopting bad policies over the years, there are good companies that have overcome disastrous economic problems and have been successful and are now listed on the NYSE and NASDAQ. Let's focus on 5 companies listed on the American stock exchange based on technical and fundamental studies.

Starting with Banco Macro (NYSE):
It is a private financial institution founded in 1976 in Argentina, specializing in serving the demands of the northern provinces of the country, where it has a strong presence. The bank offers a wide range of products and services for individuals and legal entities, such as current accounts, savings, credit cards, loans, investments, insurance, and foreign trade.

The bank is part of the Macro Group, which also includes other companies such as Macro Securities, Macro Fiducia, and Sud Inversiones. It has more than 9 million customers, 8,700 employees, and 870 branches throughout Argentine territory. In addition, it has equity stakes in other financial institutions, such as Banco del Tucumán and Nuevo Banco Suquía. It is one of the leaders in the Argentine banking sector, with a market share of 8% in deposits and 9% in loans. Its net worth is $2.1 billion, and its total assets are $16.4 billion. Its growth strategy is based on geographical diversification, expanding the branch network, technological innovation, and customer loyalty.

This is a very interesting company even though it is Argentine. We can observe the good performance it has had during this period. It has an interesting price, and in this sideways movement after a large appreciation, it seemed that the stock could correct back to around 16. But this may not be true since a high volume entered, slowing the fall. This can be interesting for an entry of a flow contrary to the sale. But still, it is a representation that was quite undefined because they were waiting for the election. It seems that with the definition, there was a bullish rally causing the price to rise to around 20.94. With the triumph, the shares of Argentine companies experienced a significant increase with a gap from 20.43 to 26.05, starting a new bullish rally.

Observing the fundamental analysis of this stock as well, we can see that it has delivered good fundamentals and, combined with technical analysis, will present an optimistic behavior for hold.

Grupo Financiero Galicia (NASDAQ)

is an Argentine financial services holding company, created in 1999. The company owns several subsidiaries, such as Banco Galicia, Tarjeta Naranja, Compañía Financiera Argentina, Sudamericana Holding, and Galicia Administradora de Fondos.

Its capital is formed by 1,474.7 million shares, with 281.2 million Class A shares, with 5 votes per share, and 1,193.5 million Class B shares, with 1 vote per share. Among the companies that are part of the group, Banco Galicia stands out, the holding's main asset and one of the largest banks in the country. It has 308 branches and 6,500 employees throughout Argentine territory. In addition, the group has a minority ownership stake in Banco do Brasil S.A., the largest bank in Latin America. In the Argentine financial system, the group has a market share of 8.9% in deposits and 9.4% in loans. Its net worth is $2,063 million, and its total assets are $17,532 million, according to data from the first quarter of 2022.

The technical analysis of the group is very similar to that of Banco Macro (NYSE). If we observe these red bars in this chart, they indicate a high traded volume, having this bar color different from the traditional green, red, or white and black colors. The reason is that this coloring serves as a heat map, and the hotter it shows, the higher the volume and participation in the asset, and the colder, the less participation in the title. This plugin, together with the volume delta plugin, shows the actions of participants who made decisions to buy securities. Similarly, we also see a gray part in this red bar, which shows the presence of participants also acting against those who made decisions to buy the asset, for example. But apparently, it looks a lot like BMA, however, with a slight downward bias to the 13.48 area, possibly falling in that range. If the stock went below this zone, it could seek lower levels, such as returning to the area of ​​least interest in the market, which is the 10 range. This would happen because of the uncertainties of Argentine politics, which now seems to have been concretized with the victory of the economist, this bias has changed to upward, starting a new uptrend channel on the daily. Here we also observe a supply test between 12.85 and 11.60, with a lower selling flow than the last buyer, after the largest absorption of purchase that happened between 10.59. Now, also with the last asset analyzed, we have an uptrend channel. Despite having a very strong selling flow, it rejected to the bottom of the candle, where it has already started to rise again, with a possible increase now with the new established management.

Now, moving on to the fundamental analysis.

The financial indicators of the company are great, despite being based in Argentina. What is very interesting is how these companies are very well managed, even in a problematic country like Argentina, which is why they are not on Nasdaq for nothing.

Mercado Libre:

Mercado Libre is an e-commerce company that operates in 18 countries in Latin America. The company has more than 16,000 employees and plans to hire another 4,000 in 2022. It also has agencies scattered throughout Brazil, which are neighborhood stores that deliver and receive packages. Thus, the company can meet a large demand from online consumers.

The platform has a diversified ownership stake, with investors such as eBay, Goldman Sachs, Tiger Global Management, and Dragoneer Investment Group. It has also acquired stakes in other entities, such as Aleph Group, a digital media organization, and Grupo 2TM, the controller of the Mercado Bitcoin broker. It is the leader in market share in the e-commerce market in Latin America, with more than 76 million active buyers and more than 12 million sellers. The platform also offers financial services, such as a payment system that allows online payments, deposits, and credits. Its net worth in 2020 was $2.6 billion, an increase of 123% compared to 2019. Its total assets in 2020 were $7.2 billion, an increase of 95% compared to 2019.

To conduct a more in-depth study of Mercado Libre, we will have to use some different charts. The first chart we will use is a weekly chart, where we can see how the company performed well in March 2020. It seems that the Nasdaq index and the Dow Jones started to work in an accumulation range, absorbing all the panic of Covid and causing the market to rise significantly. And it is no different with Mercado Libre, which also started a much higher rally than the fall it suffered at the beginning of the Covid-19 explosion. And it may seem little, but this fall from February to March caused the stock to lose 40% of its appreciation. Even more absurdly, after this major climatic event we had in 2020, the stock went from 596 to 1955, representing more than a 220% appreciation. With very good performance, also driven by the Nasdaq index, as the main technology index, during this period of 2021, technological products such as hardware, motherboards, graphics cards, and others had a high appreciation. Also, technology-focused assets, as the entity benefits greatly from technology.

In this same weekly chart, we observe that in 2021 we had a drop to the blue 50-period VWAP range. The abrupt drop, which may seem little, took it from 1955 and went to 1393, returning to 1955 again, already in August 2021.

We can also see that there are 2 blue candles in the weekly chart, and it forms a double top, which is a common reversal pattern in technical analysis. And until November, there was a lot of selling flow entering, starting the downtrend cycle. All this selling flow has a reason because these are

The abrupt fall may seem small, but it dropped from 1955 and went down to 1393, returning to 1955 again, already in August 2021.

We can also observe 2 blue candles on the weekly chart, in addition to forming a double top, which is a common reversal pattern in technical analysis. Until November, there was a significant influx of selling pressure, initiating a downtrend cycle. All this selling pressure has a reason, as it involves well-educated individuals with a lot of experience and academic background who dominate the market and know exactly what they are doing. In 2022, we experienced unusually high inflation levels, approaching those typically seen in developing countries. This was concerning, especially since the technology sector is sensitive to inflation, reflecting the overall devaluation of the free market.

We can see it starting at 600 and then reaching the range of 1098, creating a range between 1110 and 1300. It's a peculiar range, starting as bullish but showing some absorption at this price level, with several tops formed around 1307.

Also, the platform is in an uptrend channel, which initially wasn't favorable due to the stock market facing difficulties and various fluctuations, often dragged down by the technological index. However, with the triumph of the economist, Argentina's largest company benefited from this rally and seems poised for a significant increase, especially on the daily chart. From indecision, it now leans towards a bullish bias.

Let's now look at the asset's evaluation.

Currently quoted around 1000 USD, which is quite impressive for an Argentine organization, especially as it enters the Nasdaq Composite technology companies index, which speaks for itself.

However, its current situation isn't favorable, reflecting the overall state of the stock market, as its scenario mirrors that of other companies on the American exchange. In addition to technical and fundamental analysis, we must also consider macroeconomic data from the U.S., which, to some extent, impacts the market, especially interest rates, having long-term effects and depreciating major assets in the American market.

Apart from this company, there are 18 other Argentine institutions listed on both NYSE and Nasdaq. Despite the country's challenging and worrying economic situation, these companies have managed to progress amid the difficulties faced by Latin America due to various measures.

Well, we don't know if the president will indeed implement all that he proposes, even though he is economically liberal. Managing a nation requires alignment in both politics and administration. Obviously, he will face challenges in politics too, given the diversity of congress members. So, the proposals he aims to implement over time will have challenges, likely generating opportunities in financial markets. We hope Argentina can overcome this crisis, as greater opportunities often lead to higher profits.
Disclaimer: The purpose of this text is to discuss the financial market and should not be used to generate political debates.
Good Luck Argentina.


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