Thursday, April 01, 2004

De Soto Wins Prize: The Cato Institute announced that Hernando de Soto is the recipient of their bi-annual Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty which comes accompanied with US$500,000. De Soto was recognized largely for his work on property rights. The Associated Press and the Financial Times are among the first to relay the information. A later United Press International piece includes some quotes from HdSoto upon receiving word of the prize: "an enormous honor for me and my associates who worked, and in some cases, died for the cause of liberty."

Bad News: Reuters delivers a stunning headline: "Colombia stuns Peru for first qualifying win" with a 2-0 win.

More Crime: The Miami Herald's Andres Oppenheimer writes on the crime rising across the continent. He pushes a new poll by Graciela Romer and Associates and a World Health Organization quote ("Latin America is the world's most violent region") and then writes that, "In the past decade, homicide rates have risen by 380 percent in Peru." Separately, Latinamerica Press reports on a new study by the Special Commission for the Integral Reform of the Justice System (CERIAJUS) which stated that "nine million Peruvians, a third of the population, lack access to the justice system."

Macro/Micro Econ:
- Bloomberg reports that Peru's annual inflation rate dropped to 2.8 percent in March, within 0.3 percentage point of the government's year-end target, from 3.4 percent in February. Peru's central bankers "will probably hold benchmark lending rates at a record low after the inflation rate fell to a three-month low in March on declining food costs," according to Vikash Panda of 4Cast Inc.

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