UPDATE 2-Mexican factory exports post biggest drop in nearly 2 years

viernes 26 de diciembre de 2014 11:29 GYT

(Adds trade data, currency and inflation context)

MEXICO CITY Dec 26 (Reuters) - Mexican factory exports posted their biggest decline in nearly two years in November, pushing the country into a trade deficit, official data showed on Friday.

Adjusted for seasonal swings, factory exports declined by 5.0 percent from October, the biggest monthly drop since January 2013, according to figures from the national statistics office.

Total exports were down by 4.8 percent in adjusted terms after a rise of 3.8 percent the previous month. By contrast, total imports increased by 0.6 percent, the second consecutive monthly advance, the office data showed.

A sharp decline in the peso, which slipped to its lowest level in nearly six years earlier this month, has stirred fears in the Mexican central bank that the weak currency could fan inflation by raising the cost of imports.

The central bank intervened on Dec. 11 to prop up the currency, selling $200 million, but annual inflation unexpectedly ticked higher in early December.

A 15.2 percent seasonally-adjusted jump in petroleum-based imports led the November rise in imports, the figures showed.

Total consumer imports were up 8.0 percent, with non-oil consumer imports down by 1.1 percent.

Most Mexican exports are manufactured goods and nearly 80 percent of the country's total exports are sent to the United States.

That left a seasonally adjusted trade deficit of $1.064 billion, the figures showed, the biggest since January of this year. In October, Mexico registered a trade surplus of $711.7 million.

In unadjusted terms, Mexico posted a trade deficit of $1.076 billion in November, the office said. (Writing by Dave Graham; Editing by W Simon)