SAO PAULO (MarketWatch) — Brazilian financial market analysts and economists reduced their 2012 average inflation forecast for the eighth consecutive week, according to a market survey published by the Central Bank of Brazil Monday.
The economists now expect the country’s inflation to average 5.29% this year, down slightly from their forecast of 5.3% a week earlier, according to the survey. Despite the reduction, the forecast is above the central bank’s inflation target of 4.5% for the year.
Brazil’s inflation rate reached 6.50% last year, the highest since hitting 7.6% in 2004.
In the meantime, for 2013, analysts kept their inflation forecast at 5%.
The central bank’s weekly survey tracks the opinions of 100 analysts and economists and reports the average of their expectations.
The average estimate for Brazil’s 2012 gross domestic product growth was maintained at 3.27%. For 2013, analysts increased their view to 4.25% from 4.20%.
The analysts’ average forecast for the benchmark Selic interest rate at the end of 2012 remained at 9.50% and at 10.25% in 2013.
The average expectation for Brazil’s debt-to-GDP ratio at the end of this year was kept at 37%.
The forecast for this year’s foreign-trade surplus increased to $19.60 billion, from $19.10 billion. Analysts expect Brazil to post a current-account deficit of $65.90 billion at the end of this year.
Brazil’s currency, the real, is expected to end this year at BRL1.78 to the dollar, according to the survey.
SOURCE : EIN NEWS – Brazil Business TodayBy Rogerio Jelmayer