Guatemala: Full-year remittances reach all-time high in 2017 on solid December transfers
Remittances from workers abroad grew 6.2% in December from the same month a year earlier, reaching USD 720.3 million and marking a deceleration from November’s 7.7% expansion.
In the 12 months through December, remittances edged out November’s cumulative USD 8.1 billion to end the year at an all-time high of USD 8.2 billion. Moreover, cumulative transactions through full-year 2017 represented a 14.4% increase over full-year 2016, a slight deceleration from the 15.1% increase in the 12 months through November.
Remittances, an important source of income for Guatemalan households, account for more than a tenth of the country’s GDP and the vast majority of receipts originate in the United States. As such, remittances are inextricably tied to U.S. employment trends and the broader health of the U.S. economy. In 2017, fresh concerns over the direction of U.S. immigration policy prompted part of the double-digit surge of remittances inflows.