The result of the primaries, seen by many as a key gauge for the first round of Argentina's presidential elections on October 27, is thought to be a clear signal that the country is ready to reject the ruling government's austere economic policies, which have been supported by a record stand/by loan of US$ 57 billion.
"The dialogue is open, but I don't want to lie to Argentines".
Among the leaders of the elections were the current president, the liberal Mauricio Macri, and the Kirchnerist ticket, led by Alberto Fernández, who has former president Cristina Kirchner as his vice.More news: Man sinks parents' BMW gift because he wanted a Jaguar instead
Argentina's main political parties had already chosen their presidential nominees, allowing the primary to serve as the first concrete measure of voter sentiment after opinion polls showed a narrow margin between Macri and Fernandez. An IMF delegation is flying to Argentina supposedly to meet government officials and representatives of the winning opposition "Frente de Todos", (Everybody's Front). Markets were taken by surprise as polls were predicting a tight race; instead, Macri found himself lugging 16 points behind the opposition.
The Argentina peso fell 15.3% against the dollar. The business-friendly president had promised to continue with the same austerity-driven approach if reelected later this year.
But it has failed to achieve results with inflation running at 55 per cent.More news: Jamie Chadwick celebrates inaugural W Series title win!
In contrast, Alberto Fernandez - who was expected to come out on top in the symbolic primaries but by a much smaller margin - said the country could look forward to creating a "new history".
Macri and his running mate, Miguel Angel Pichetto, had 32% - a wide margin that revealed the considerable depth of Macri's weakness, potentially positioning the Fernandez team to win in the first round of a general election voting on October 27. He says he is taking the necessary, painful steps to get the economy going after 12 years of leftist populism under Cristina Fernandez and her predecessor and late husband, Nestor Kirchner. However, he was forced instead to seek a record $57 billion bailout from the International Monetary Fund.
The Fernandez ticket, whose two members are not related, contends Macri must be defeated so they can fight the poverty and homelessness that they blame on his policies. Matias Carugati, chief economist for Management & Fit, said the victory of the Fernandez team would put "sustained" pressure on the exchange rate and stocks due to the prospect that the South American's recent free, less state-interventionist course could be reversed. He is also advocating subsidies to support the people. Markets are also anxious over de Kirchner, whose years as president from 2007 to 2015 were marked by a balance of payments crisis, interventionist state policies, currency controls and protectionism.More news: Struggling Phillies bring back Charlie Manuel as hitting coach
The Merval index plunged to 27,530.80 points, a drop of 37.93 percent, as some major stocks lost up to 50 percent, AP said.