PREVIEW-Argentine inflation seen accelerating in March

WHAT: Argentina consumer prices for March

WHEN: Wednesday, April 14 at 4 p.m. local time (1900 GMT)

REUTERS FORECAST: Median 1.5 pct vs 1.2 pct in February

FACTORS TO WATCH: Rising prices for food, clothing and
education are seen lifting Argentina’s official inflation rate
to 1.5 percent in March, according to the median estimate in a
Reuters poll of eight analysts.

Economists accuse the government of under-reporting
official data in an attempt to temper inflation expectations
and save money on repayments of inflation-indexed bonds.

Analysts say March’s real inflation rate was closer to 3
percent.

Argentina inflation was 0.4 percent in March 2009 and 1.2
percent in January.

MARKET IMPACT: Rising inflation is weighing on President
Cristina Fernandez’s sagging popularity ratings, which now
stand around 25 percent.

Private companies struggling to recover from the 2009
economic downturn are also facing union demands for pay rises
of up to 25 percent, even as official price data puts 12-month
inflation through February at 9.1 percent.

High inflation is also sparking some calls by exporters for
the government to allow the Argentine peso (ARSB=: ) to
depreciate to help keep Argentine exports competitive.

Brisker inflation also makes it more difficult for Economy
Minister Amado Boudou to deliver on his promise to end the
controversy over government data reporting which has damaged
Argentina’s perception among investors.

Higher inflation could reduce investors’ appetite for the
peso currency and peso-denominated assets, such as government
bonds.

LINKS: Argentina’s Bureau of Statistics website:
http://www.indec.gov.ar/

For historical Argentine statistical data in Spanish,
please see pages (ARECI09: ) through (ARECI14: )

To see a calendar of Argentine economic indicators, please
double-click on (ARECI02: ) or type in ARECI02 on a quote page
and press enter.

For separate pages detailing Argentine analysts’ economic
forecasts, double-click on (ARECI05: ), (ARECI06: ), (ARECI07: ) and
(ARECI08: )

Stock Market Advice

PREVIEW-Argentine inflation seen accelerating in March