Brazilians Tighten Belts and Skip Overseas Trips

Dearer dollar keeps Brazilian more frugal The appreciation of the American dollar against the Brazilian real brought a reduction in travels abroad for Brazilians. With this, in November, the international travel account (Brazilian revenues from foreign expenses in the country minus expenses of Brazilians abroad) was US$ 128 million negative, whereas in the same period in 2007 the deficit had been greater: US$ 369 million.

This month, up to the 19th, the deficit in the travel account had been US$ 69 million. With this, the Central Bank revised the deficit forecast for this year from US$ 6.2 billion to US$ 5.2 billion and the estimate for next year from US$ 6 billion to US$ 1.5 billion.

"The depreciation of the Brazilian currency caused expenses by Brazilians with trips abroad to drop much," stated the head of the Economic Department at the BC, Altamir Lopes.

In November, expenses totaled US$ 568 million, against US$ 809 million in the same period in 2007. This month, according to preliminary figures, the value dropped even further: having reached US$ 385 million.

Last month, expenses of foreigners in Brazil totaled US$ 440 million, the same as in the same month in 2007. This month, the revenues have dropped to US$ 316 million.

Optimism

Three of every four Brazilians are aware of the international financial crisis, which is considered serious or very serious by 84% of those interviewed for the CNI/Ibope survey.

However, to over half the population of Brazil (56%) the country will be little or not at all affected by it. This evaluation is a reflex of the perception of 43% of those interviewed that the country is more prepared for this crisis than it had been in the previous ones, despite 68% believing that this crisis is as serious or more serious than the previous ones.

According to the special chapter of the opinion poll, 75% of those interviewed knew of the crisis before answering the questionnaire. Another 23% said that the first time they heard about it was when the interviewer made the question (the remainder did not answer).

The researchers went into the field, in 141 cities throughout Brazil, between December 5th and 8th, and they approached 2.002 people. The margin of error of the research is two percentage points, up or down, and the trust interval is 95%.

To 35% of those answering, the crisis is very serious, whereas to 49% it is serious, 7% said that it is little serious and 2% said it is not serious at all. Another 7% did not know what to answer or decided not to answer.

In chapter "Perception of the Crisis", 46% of those interviewed believe that the international financial turbulence should affect the Brazilian economy little. Another 10% said that Brazil should not be affected. To 37%, the economy will be greatly affected (7% did not know or did not answer).

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