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The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® for Brazil, Together with Fundacao Getulio Vargas, Increased Slightly in March

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index® for Brazil, together with Fundacao Getulio Vargas (TCB/FGV Brazil LEI), increased 0.1 percent in March. The index now stands at 124.9 (2004 = 100), following a 0.6 percent decline in both February and January. Three of the eight components contributed positively to the index in March.

"Stock prices and trade drove the Leading Economic Index slightly higher in March, but continued short-term volatility in the index suggests that Brazil's economic growth will, at best, be very modest in the foreseeable future," says Paulo Picchetti, Economist at FGV/IBRE. "Meanwhile, weaknesses in industrial output outweighed the benefits of continued resiliency in the labor market, resulting in a slight decline in the Coincident Economic Index, which measures current conditions in the economy."

Ataman Ozyildirim, Economist at The Conference Board, added, "The decline in the six-month average growth rate of the LEI has moderated compared to last year, but is still not back in expansionary territory. The combination of weak global growth and continued tapering of Quantitative Easing in the U.S. provides no hope that the pace of growth can accelerate in the next few months."

The Conference Board Coincident Economic Index® for Brazil, together with Fundacao Getulio Vargas (TCB/FGV Brazil CEI), which measures current economic activity, decreased 0.2 percent in March to 129.1 (2004 = 100), following a 0.1 percent increase in February and a 0.9 percent increase in January. Three of the six components contributed positively to the index in March.

TCB/FGV Brazil LEI aggregates eight economic indicators that measure economic activity in Brazil. Each of the LEI components has proven accurate on its own. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out so-called "noise" to show underlying trends more clearly.

www.conference-board.org

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