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Markets News

UPDATE 2-Mexico industrial output rises in November, consumer confidence up at year-end

(Recasts first paragraph, adds consumer confidence data)

MEXICO CITY, Jan 10 (Reuters) - Mexico’s industrial output rose for the first time in three months and consumer confidence inched higher, official data showed on Friday, offering hints of growth as Mexico struggles to stave off a recession.

Industrial activity grew 0.8% last November from the prior month in seasonally adjusted terms, the first monthly rise since August, the national statistics agency reported.

A 1.2% increase in mining activity fueled the advance, along with a 1% rise in construction output and a 0.2% climb in manufacturing activity. Energy production dipped.

Compared with November 2018, industrial output fell 2.1% in unadjusted terms, the 13th consecutive month of year-on-year declines.

Consumer confidence, meanwhile, gained a mild 0.1 point in December from the prior month, reflecting a still cautious shopper outlook at the year’s end. It was one point lower than consumer confidence in December 2018.

Even so, consumer confidence has strengthened 17% since President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador was elected in July 2018, according to a report by Goldman Sachs analyst Alberto Ramos.

“Consumers were enthused by the administration’s spending priorities and other government policies,” he said.

Mexico’s economy entered a mild recession during the first half of 2019 and was flat in the third quarter, fueling fears that Mexican gross domestic product may have suffered its first contraction in a decade in 2019 when official figures are published in coming weeks. (Reporting by Noe Torres and Daina Beth Solomon; Editing by David Gregorio and Steve Orlofsky)

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