Brazil
Brazilian economy grows but disappoints during Bolsonaro's first year in office
It registered a 1.1% increase, the lowest since 2016. The market estimated a rise of 2.5% due to the economic reforms of Minister Guedes.

The market's euphoria over Jair Bolsonaro's election victory last year was far from being reflected in the economic indicators. In the first year of the current president's term, Brazil's GDP recorded the lowest growth since 2016.

The 1.1% increase reported by the Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística (IBGE) for 2019 was far below the 2.5% expected by the main economic consulting firms at the beginning of last year.

At the time, the stock market of South America's largest economy was showing remarkable gains based on the confidence in the liberal economic reforms promised by economy super minister Paulo Guedes.

Despite the fact that many of them came to fruition, the results were so bad that now Guedes' departure is beginning to be discussed within the administration itself. As LPO reported, Bolsonaro demanded from the minister a minimum growth of 2% by 2020.

The president's concern stems from the upcoming municipal elections in October, where there are fears of a poor performance due to the constant devaluation of the currency and the persistence of a high unemployment rate.

According to public data, the worst growth in GDP was seen in industry, which rose by only 0.5%. This is the sector with the greatest integration with Argentina, whose economy is growing by 0.25% for every point of progress made by the neighboring country.

In turn, both the service and the agricultural sector grew by 1.3%, family spending by 1.8%, and government spending by 0.4%.

Overall, the 1.1% growth represents the least progress since the severe recession of 2015/2016 in the midst of the Lavajato scandal, a crisis from which Brazil has not managed to emerge.

It so happens that the economy is still 3.1% below the first quarter of 2014 in current values according to the IBGE, the date on which the fall in GDP began.

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