Brazil’s Unemployment Falls to Single Digit

Brazil’s industrialists are optimistic about the economy in the first half of this year. Data released today by the Getúlio Vargas Foundation (FGV) from the 154th Conjunctural Survey of the Manufacturing Sector reveal that 59% believe that business will improve, as against only 4% that think things will get worse.

The 55% difference between the two extremes represents the best result ever for this time of year, 1% higher than the difference in January, 2004. The survey embraces the period between October, 2004, and January, 2005.


The FGV study also informs that industry continues to follow the growth path initiated in the second half of 2003 and that prospects for the coming months are good. Another important finding that confirms the industrialists’ confidence is the outlook for employment in the sector.


The survey emphasizes that the weak performance of the sector between September and November of last year does not mean “a breakdown of the current growth cycle but, rather, an adjustment after several months of accelerated expansion.”


Spanish Micro-firms


The economic and trade attaché of the Spanish Embassy in
Brazil, Francisco Rorrales Kindelan, announced today that he expects micro-firms from his country to bring new investments to Brazil. According to Kindelan, the sectors that arouse greatest interest are machinery and tools.


This statement was made after a meeting between the Spanish Prime Minister, José Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, and entrepreneurs in São Paulo, prior to Zapatero’s departure for Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Santiago, Chile.


According to Kindelan, to increase their business activities in Brazil, the Spanish entrepreneurs are only awaiting the country’s definition of regulatory rules and fiscal and labor laws.


Unemployment Falls


Unemployment fell in Brazil’s six metropolitan areas (Salvador, Rio de Janeiro, Recife, Belo Horizonte, São Paulo, and Porto Alegre).


The unemployment rate in December was 9.6%, as against the 10.6% registered in November.


This is the first time the unemployment rate has been in single-digits since the new research methodology was adopted in October, 2001.


The data appear in the Monthly Employment Survey, released today by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE).


Translation: David Silberstein
Agência Brasil

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