Coronavirus surprise: Remittances to Mexico rise during pandemic
In March, the month the World Health Organization declared a pandemic, remittances to Mexico topped $4 billion — a record.
“I remember thinking, ‘Oh my God, what happened here?’ ” said Jonathan Heath, deputy governor of Mexico’s central bank. “It’s the exact opposite of what we were expecting.”
For years, the logic behind remittances — the payments that migrant workers send back home — was straightforward. As more people migrate and as economies in the developed world grow, remittances increase. During economic contractions, when immigrants are disproportionately vulnerable, remittances fall. So when the World Bank predicted in April that the pandemic would cause their “sharpest decline in recent history,” it seemed reasonable.
But that logic is now being thrown into question in countries such as Mexico, where new data continued the surprising trend: Despite the global economic decline, Mexicans received $3.53 billion in remittances in June — an 11 percent jump year-over-year.
“We understand the economics of migration and how people make decisions in times of …continued .
[Source: Washington Post]