Brazil's economy up nearly 10% in Q1

13:33, May 20, 2010      

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The Brazilian economy grew by 9.84 percent in the first quarter compared to the same period last year, official data showed Wednesday.

According to the Central Bank's Index of Economic Activity (IBC-Br), the economy was up 2.38 percent compared to the fourth quarter of 2009.

The IBC-Br, which is being presented for the first time, is a tool to anticipate the evolution of economic activity and to help the Central Bank in its decisions concerning the basic interest rate Selic.

At its last meeting, the Central Bank's Monetary Policy Committee had decided unanimously to increase the Selic rate by 0.75 percent, reaching 9.5 percent annually; and an amendment was expected next month to face inflationary pressures due to economic overheating.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister Guido Mantega said Wednesday that the country would generate two million jobs in 2010.

Brazil has created almost one million jobs in the first four months of 2010, close to the amount of jobs in the entire year 2009, data showed.

The Brazilian National Industry Confederation (CNI) on Monday had forecast a 6-percent gross domestic product growth this year, as the country's labor market was showing signs of improvement.



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