LatinNews Daily - 18 April 2023

In brief: Slight drop in Brazil’s economic activity in January

* Brazil’s central bank (BCB) has released the latest economic activity index (IBC-Br), which is used to anticipate GDP figures. The BCB registered a monthly contraction of 0.04% in economic activity in January, although economic activity was up 3.03% in year-on-year terms, while accumulated economic activity over the 12 months to January was up 3.0% from the previous 12-month period. This deceleration in Brazil’s economic activity comes amid  persistently high interest rates which the government has repeatedly urged the BCB to lower. In its latest monetary policy meeting on 22 March, the BCB voted to hold the benchmark interest rate at 13.75% for the fifth consecutive month.

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