* Consumer confidence up 0.13 percent in November
* Economists welcome sign on domestic demand
* Outlook perhaps boosted by weekend sales
MEXICO CITY, Dec 4 Mexican consumer confidence
rose for the second month in a row in November amid increased
optimism about the outlook for Latin America's No. 2 economy,
according to data released on Tuesday.
The seasonally adjusted index rose to 97.0 in November
from 96.8 in October, the national statistics
agency said, reaching its highest level since May.
Mexico has so far weathered a global downturn better than
many economies, buoyed by U.S. demand for its exports. But
consumer confidence still lags behind levels seen before the
Two of the index's five components rose, with increases in
the willingness to buy big-ticket durable goods and a more
positive view about the outlook for the economy in 12 months.
"That's quite promising because there have been signs in the
services sector that activity had slowed a bit as slower growth
filtered through from the U.S.," said Capital Markets economist
David Rees, adding that domestic demand could help pick up the
slack from a weaker external sector.
He also pointed to the fiscal and energy reform plans of
Mexico's new government, which took power last weekend and hopes
to spur growth of as much as 6 percent a year.
"The election of (President) Enrique Pena Nieto and him
taking office would be deemed positive for the economy," Rees
Confidence may also have been bolstered by strong sales
during Mexico's "Buen Fin," a three-day campaign in November to
boost consumer spending that is modeled on the United States'
Retail sales during the campaign at stores that have been
open for at least a year rose nearly 30 percent over last year,
on strong sales of general merchandise, clothes and shoes, a
retailers' association said last month.
A spike in annual inflation to a 2-1/2-year high of 4.77
percent in September had cut into the appetite for major goods
purchases, but the pace of consumer price increases cooled in
October, supporting spending.
The unadjusted confidence index fell slightly to 94.2 in
November, from 94.9 in October.