WSJ – Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is taking on its biggest competition of all in Mexico: the street vendors, traditional markets and small stores that account for over half of grocery sales in the country. Wal-Mart’s solution for Mexico is a mini-grocer format called Bodega Aurrera Express, which the company launched in 2008.
Chron – When Gulf Cartel king Juan Garcia Abrego was captured in Mexico in 1996, he sought to show he was Mexican, not American. Now nearly two decades later, Garcia Abrego declares himself a U.S. citizen.
AP – More Monarch butterflies appear to have made the long flight from the U.S. and Canada to their winter nesting ground in western Mexico. But experts still fear that unusual cold temperatures will threaten the orange and black insects.
WSJ – Mexico’s crude oil production fell in 2014 for a 10th consecutive year. Petróleos Mexicanos produced 2.353 million barrels a day of crude oil in December, bringing average output for 2014 to 2.429 million barrels a day, compared with 2.522 million in 2013.
Bloomberg – Holders of Mexico’s 100-year bonds, the world’s longest-maturity government debt, are one of the biggest beneficiaries of Janet Yellen’s patience. The nation’s $2.7 billion of dollar-denominated notes due in 2110 have gained 6.6 percent since Dec. 17. That’s pushed returns this year to 22 percent, the most among Mexican dollar debt and more than double the 9.3 percent average for emerging markets.
Reuters – A chief suspect in a gunfight in western Mexico that killed 11 people turned himself in for questioning on Wednesday as the government struggles to impose order in a violent state it claims to have pacified.
Time – More non-Mexicans than Mexicans were apprehended on the U.S.-Mexico border by the Border Patrol in 2014, the first time on record. About 229,000 Mexicans and 257,000 non-Mexicans were apprehended, according to a Pew Research report.
San Antonio Business Journal – Mexico’s historic energy reforms go into effect on Jan. 1, but officials have just released technical documents that outline rules for imports and exports in this new market.
EFE – Spanish infrastructure company ACS said its Dragados Offshore unit built a platform in the Gulf of Mexico for Mexican state-owned oil giant Pemex that will produce oil and gas.
El Sol de Mexico – Cold fronts are expected to bring rain today, Wednesday, in states in north, northeast, central and eastern Mexico. Winds up to 60 mph and potential snowfall are also forecast.
El Universal – The Federal Institute for Access to Information and Data Protection ordered PROFECO to find and deliver the information on all fines imposed from 2009 to the current date.
El Occidental – The Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection said 781 tons of hazardous materials, substances and waste were carried out at ports and borders during 2014.
El Economista -The use of gadgets and mobile devices has changed routines in families, as revealed in a study conducted by the Center for Public Opinion of the Universidad del Valle de Mexico.
By Dolia Estevez / Forbes
It was not the best year for Mexico; 2014 will be remembered for violent acts that shook the country, most notably the abduction and likely massacre of 43 teacher-trainees (“Normalistas” in Spanish), the execution of 22 people by the Army and the ongoing killings by powerful criminal groups of thousands of Mexicans, including two journalists and three Catholic priests.
The year also witnessed major new corruption scandals and controversies over alleged conflict of interest by government officials, which resulted in a crisis of confidence engulfing President Enrique Peña Nieto, his closest collaborators, major political parties and institutions, such as the Army.
The rapidly deteriorating internal situation overshadowed some of Peña Nieto’s 2014 successes, including the arrest of one of the world’s most wanted criminals and the approval of an historic energy overhaul opening Mexico’s vast oil sector to foreign capital for the first time in decades.
Peña Nieto ends the year with his popularity plummeting. According to a recent survey, the president’s disapproval rating has soared to 52 percent, the highest in his tenure and more negative than those of his two predecessors at this point in their terms; 38 percent of respondents said they did not believe Peña Nieto “one bit.”
Dallas Morning News – President Enrique Peña Nieto travels to the White House next week, battered and bruised and in need of a political boost from his U.S. counterpart.
Fox News Latino – Questions about collusion between municipal police and drug cartel henchmen, and the possible complicity of Mexico’s army and Federal Police, have fueled a debate about whether Mexico’s law enforcement agencies are capable of—or willing to—effectively provide security.
Reuters – The Mexican telecoms regulator on Monday set the 2015 rates for interconnection fees between competing networks as part of measures to open up its historically hidebound sector dominated by Carlos Slim’s America Movil.