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Salary bonus: a wink for the pockets and another for the CGT

November 7, 2018 - By Joseph Taylor

Inside and outside the Government there was satisfaction for the meeting between the Minister of Production, Dante Sica, the Secretary of Labor, Jorge Triaca, the General Secretary of the CGT, Héctor Daer and the President of the Argentine Industrial Union, Miguel Acevedo.

The result of the meeting, specially convened to analyze the employment situation, was that the government will sign a decree setting a bonus of $ 5,000 that companies will pay twice, in November and February.

The “fine print” of the decree would be set between today and tomorrow, for which a draft will be circulated in the next few hours, which will also include the entry into force of a new mechanism to monitor the employment situation, at least until March.

Both officials and union leaders and businessmen said they had not talked about the strike that the CGT had planned to convene before the end of the year. But now the eyes are focused on what happens on Thursday when the unionists are planning to set the date for the measure of force.

To give the bonus implies having achieved a possibility that was blocked and rejected by the Government until a few months ago. Also, another positioning in front of the onslaught of the “hard” headed by Hugo and Pablo Moyano.

For the Argentine Industrial Union also the bonus of $ 5,000 represents the possibility of taking air. Acevedo had anticipated that his option was the bonus before the reopening of the paritarias.

The increases of 40% achieved by truck drivers, judicial, banking and private oil tankers took the tension on the rise in other large unions, and also boys, who are feeling intensely the fall in the purchasing power of wages despite the fact that in November they would charge the second part of the increases expected at the beginning of the year.

For the Government, the bond will seek to decompress the mood at times when bad, very bad data appear on the evolution of economic activity.

The INDEC announced the Industrial Monthly Estimator, which in September had a fall of 11.5% with respect to the same month of the previous year and accumulates a drop of 6.4% so far in 2018.

The falls were sensitive in Food (-3.2%), Textiles (-24.6%), Petroleum (-11%), Cars (-15.7%) and only the item Metallic basic, steel and aluminum, recorded an improvement of 2.7% in September against September 2017.

But, among the most worrying data of this official statistics are the one that maintain that 60.7% of companies anticipate a drop in domestic demand for the fourth quarter of the year and that 64.3% do not plan to take more employees .

In the Casa Rosada they insist that this is “the worst moment” regarding the purchasing power relationship of wages-consumption and in this they coincide with the private analysts who estimate that a 9 to 10 percent decline is taking place in the Average real salary.

That is why the $ 5,000 also aim to improve somewhat consumption in the coming months in the heat of the stability of the dollar that has been verified in the last five weeks.

“The still dollar is the best economic news,” said one of the city’s “gurus” who is betting on the prolongation of the exchange rate calm, since it could lower the country risk rate by 600 points in the coming days in the heat of the possibility that the Central Bank buys dollars in the event that the currency touches the “floor” of the exchange band.

Meanwhile, the financial operators who rested yesterday for the banking holiday highlighted the case of the resolution of the $ 5,000 bonus from the management of Sica and Triaca and without the appearance of the Chief of Staff, Marcos Peña.

The calm dollar seems to have generated a new platform for other political instances.

Meanwhile, in the Casa Rosada expect this month’s inflation to fall to 3% after the 6.5% in September and the more than 5% that would be known in October. They believe they can glimpse a better reality in the next 90 days in what also includes the transit of the end of the year.

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