According to a report in the Latin American Herald Tribune, remittances increased 8% during the first quarter of the year compared to the first quarter of 2011.
Expats wired a total of $1.06 billion to their families back home in the first three months of 2012, according to a report on the Web page of the Banco de Guatemala.
Figures from the International Organization for Migration show that some 1.5 million Guatemalans live outside their country, the vast majority of them in the United States.
Guatemala received $4.37 billion in remittances last year, a gain of 6.08 percent over 2010.
Analysts at the Banco de Guatemala expect total remittances in 2012 to reach $4.5 billion.
Remittances from family members abroad represent about 12 percent of the Central American country’s gross domestic product and help to provide economic support for at least 1 million Guatemalan households, according to the central bank.
Wire transfers from Guatemalans in the United States fell sharply in 2008 and 2009 amid a recession in the world’s largest economy.