5 clues to what 2012 holds for Latin America's economy

The general opinion is that while the economic outlook for Latin America in 2012 is not as rosy as it has been in the past, it's not a bad one. 

1. Overall picture

Eraldo Peres/AP/File
IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde (r.) speaks during a news conference as Brazil's Economic Minister Guido Mantega looks on in Brasilia, Brazil, in this Dec. 1, 2011 file photo. Lagarde was on her first official tour of Latin America in December.

The economic story of Latin America for the past several years has been how well it fared despite global economic volatility, especially compared with the US and Europe. Growth for 2012 is still expected to be steady. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) forecasts that the region’s economy will grow by 4 percent this year. But some analysts are starting to warn that this time, unlike in the 2008-09 crisis, a global recession could mean there's a “toxic” situation on Latin America’s horizon.

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