WASHINGTON, June 6 (Reuters) - Argentina has taken all the requisite steps to revamp its economic data so far, but it must still meet two more deadlines as it seeks to bring its data quality in line with international standards, the International Monetary Fund’s board said on Friday.
The IMF, which requires accurate statistics to analyze the world’s economies, last year censured Argentina over failing to improve its inflation and GDP growth data - but later signaled Latin America’s third-largest economy was making progress.
Argentina must now comply with the IMF’s strict timeline for data improvements, releasing new national consumer price index (CPI) and revised GDP estimates by the end of March, and conducting further actions to better align its data with international standards by the end of September, and then by February 2015.
“The executive board recognized the implementation of all the specified actions it had called for at this juncture and the initial steps taken by the Argentine authorities to remedy the inaccurate provision of data,” the board said in a statement.
Argentina revamped its consumer price index earlier this year in a bid to win back the trust of financial markets after years of blatantly underreporting inflation.
But the new index continues to clock inflation at well below analysts’ estimates and the government has stopped listing the products measured, raising questions over how much the data is being dragged down by price controls that the administration puts on scores of food and household items.
The IMF board said it would next receive a progress report on Argentina’s efforts to improve its data on Nov. 14. (Reporting by Anna Yukhananov; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)