CNN - Ciudad Juarez officials are stepping up security -- for police. Officers, under increasing threats from criminal groups, will be housed in hotels and other secure areas of the city, Ciudad Juarez Mayor Hector Murguia said.
AP - Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the U.S. House's chief investigative committee, threatened Attorney General Eric Holder with contempt if he failed to provide additional documents in the inquiry into Fast and Furious.
Truckinginfo - Trade using surface transportation between the U.S. and Canada and Mexico was 12.7 percent higher in November 2011 than in November 2010, totaling $76.7 billion, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
LAT - Mexican President Felipe Calderon has once again clashed with a citizen angry about the effects of the country's drug war, this time during a speech in which a man in the audience shouted, "How many more dead?"
Reuters - A World Trade Organisation ruling against China's restrictions on raw material exports could force changes to some of its rare earth policies but is unlikely to yield the boost in exports of the metals that consumers want to see.
Marketwire - A protest at the Mexican Consulate in Vancouverby community and labor activists demonstrated support for guest worker Victor Robles in the wake of his alleged blacklisting by Mexico and its consular staff for suspected union organizing.
InSight - According to Mexico's Defense Department, criminal organizations are equipping themselves with firearms that are between 20 and 30 years old. The government says this casts doubt that gangs are better armed than security forces.
By C.M. Matthews
Wall Street Journal
Mexico lost $872 billion to corruption, crime and tax evasion over the last 40 years, according to a new study from Global Financial Integrity.
The massive sum was leaked out of the country in illicit financial outflows between 1970 and 2010. It represented, on average, 5.2 percent of the country’s annual GDP.
“This is a devastatingly large amount of money for any developing country to lose,” GFI Director Raymond W. Baker said. “$872 billion is gone, which could have been used to develop the Mexican economy, to invest in education, to build roads, or to fight the drug cartels. The negative ramifications are huge for everyday Mexicans.”
The study, titled “Illicit Financial Flows from Developing Countries over the Decade Ending 2009,” found that illicit outflows from Mexico exploded from an annual average of $3 billion in the 1970s to $49.6 billion in the 2000s. It also found that the outflows drove Mexico’s underground economy, spurring drug smuggling and arms trafficking, among other things.
Global Financial Integrity, a Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group, drew on data from the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund on external debt and trade mispricing to calculate illicit capital leakage. The study measures the illicit financial flows out of 160 different developing nations. In total, the group estimates the developing world lost $8.44 trillion from 2000 to 2010.