For Labor Market, Brazil Becomes China

September 26, 2014

Kenneth Rapoza – Forbes, 9/25/2014

The unemployment rate in Rio de Janeiro state, home to 16.5 million people, is just 3%. It’s never been so low. It’s almost as if Brazil has developed some sort of China-style full-employment policy. On a national level, unemployment is just 5%. By comparison, China’s official unemployment rate is a little over 4%.

When it comes to unemployment statistics, Brazil has become China.

Brazil’s economy is slowing. It entered into a technical recession in the second quarter, defined by back-to-back quarters of economic contraction. China’s economy is slowing, with Barclays Capital economist Jian Chang in Hong Kong expecting Beijing to lower its official GDP target to 7% instead of 7.5%. Yet, miraculously, unemployment is just 4.1%, unchanged year over year.

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Brazil’s Economic Recovery Seen Lagging Neighbors

September 25, 2014

Paulo Trevisani – The Wall street Journal, 09/24/2014

After seeing their economies lifted by years of strong global demand for raw materials such as copper, iron, soybeans and oil, Latin America’s largest commodities exporters now are trimming growth expectations and struggling with inflation.

But while economists see better times ahead for nations including Chile, Peru and Mexico, forecasts for Brazil are grim, posing a challenge for a government to be elected next month.

Brazil, critics say, frittered away its boom years with measures that propelled consumption rather than investment, while its smaller neighbors adhered to more conservative policies. With the economy shrinking so far this year and inflation at 6.5%, Brazil is in a straitjacket from which the new government may have a hard time escaping, no matter who is elected president in October’s elections, these people say.

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Brazil begins dairy exports to Russia

September 24, 2014

Russia Today, 9/24/2014

Three so-far-unnamed Brazilian dairy companies have received the proper paperwork to start deliveries to Russia, a representative of the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture said. The new imports will help fill a gaping hole left by EU suppliers.

One of the companies has already started deliveries, Marcelo Junqueira, secretary for international affairs of the Brazilian Agriculture Ministry Marcelo said, ITAR-TASS reported.

The new deliveries will help fill the 57 percent gap of imported dairy products after Russia introduced a one-year food embargo in August on certain agricultural products from the EU, US, Australia, Canada, Australia and Norway.

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Brazil Files Bribery Charges in Embraer Aircraft Sale to Dominican Republic

September 24, 2014

Joe Palazzolo and Rogerio Jelmayer – The Wall Street Journal, 9/23/2014

Brazilian authorities have filed a criminal action against eight Embraer SA employees accusing them of bribing officials in the Dominican Republic in return for a $92 million contract to provide the country’s armed forces with attack planes.

The criminal complaint, filed under seal and reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, marks one of the first known efforts by Brazil to prosecute its citizens for allegedly paying bribes abroad, a milestone achieved with help from the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The U.S. agencies are also investigating the company’s dealings in the Dominican Republic and elsewhere and have provided their Brazilian counterparts with evidence, according to a request last year for legal assistance from Brazilian prosecutors.

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Brazil’s young professionals look to emerging markets

September 23, 2014

Paulo Cabral – CCTV America, 09/22/2014

Brazil has become a destination for those who look for employment in emerging markets over the last a few years. A growing number of students and young professionals are moving to Brazil. CCTV America’S Paulo Cabral reports.

In one recent survey, 90 percent of the young professionals said they expected to work in at least three or four countries during their lives. Among the BRICS nations, Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, Brazil was the preferred destination for 40 percent of the students.

The recession in Brazil hasn’t discouraged young professionals from coming here to build careers. Because of a shortage of skilled workers, the labor market remains tight and unemployment remains close to a record low of 4.9 percent.

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Is Petrobras Becoming Too Tied to Brazil Elections and Sentiment?

September 23, 2014

Jon C. Ogg – 24/7 Wall St., 09/22/2014

Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE: PBR), or Petrobras, is showing how dangerous it can be for one company to be considered such a key market barometer for upcoming elections. With Brazil having tipped from a great emerging market back into a red-tape economy, and now into an economy that keeps weighing social issues over that of domestic and international finance, the question to ask is whether Petrobras is simply becoming too much of a daily barometer for Brazil’s upcoming presidential elections.

As the October 5, 2014, presidential election comes closer and closer, Petrobras shares seem to rise and fall drastically around predictive polling and news flows each day. From an outsider’s view, it is easy to see how and why a socialist-leaning president would be more liked by the bulk of the population — after all, Brazil’s general population is far from wealthy.

The flip side is also easy to see, and that is that international money is not going to flow into a nation that treats capital so poorly. To say that common stock investors of Petrobras are treated poorly in the capital structure would be the understatement of the year. If Petrobras was an international oil giant that acted like most of its large peers in the Americas and Europe, investors would likely flock back into Petrobras (and likely elsewhere in Brazil).

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Brazil’s idea for future mobility: the good old bus

September 23, 2014

Meera Senthilingam – CNN, 09/22/2014

Autonomous vehicles, levitating trains and supersonic tubes have all been suggested as radical ways to transport us faster as the new urban age approaches, but it seems the real secret to a faster commute has been with us all along — the bus.

Bus rapid transit (BRT) systems are paving the way for sustainable, efficient, and affordable travel and now operate in 181 cities worldwide. But they’re not just your regular bus service. Exclusive bus lanes dominate the center of roads, prepaid tickets prevent delays when boarding and raised platforms at bus stops make you level with the bus floor to get on.

These small details all make for a smooth, slick service to help you reach your destination in record time and its nothing new, the first system was pioneered 40 years ago.

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