unemployment

Anadolu Agency

LONDON — Brazil lost 1.54 million jobs in 2015, officials said Thursday, as the country’s economy continues to contract amid the worst recession in a generation.

Industrial, civil construction and services sectors were worst affected, according to statistics issued by Brazil’s Ministry of Labor and Employment, which represent the worst result in 24 years.

Labor Minister Miguel Rossetto admitted 2015 had been a “difficult” year. “It is not a good result. We saw a reduction in jobs and average salaries, but the victories of previous years have been preserved as the level of jobs remains high,” Rossetto was quoted by local media as saying.

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Anadolu Agency

SÃO PAULO — Brazil saw increases in unemployment and inequality in 2013, according to new official figures released Thursday by the country’s office of national statistics, the IBGE.

Brazil’s Gini Index, a measure of inequality by income distribution, rose from 0.496 in 2012 to 0.498 in 2013, where ‘zero’ represents perfect equality. The increase breaks a years-long downward trend in inequality experienced since 2001, when it was 0.563.

[Important update 19 Sept: The IBGE later announced it had made “serious errors” in some of its calculations, the most noteworthy of which being the Gini Index, which in fact fell to 0.495 in 2013. The IBGE said this still constituted a “stagnation”. The government has called for an inquiry into the errors.]

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Anadolu Agency

SÃO PAULO – Market analysts in Brazil have predicted, for the first time, that the country’s economy will expand by less than 1% in 2014, according to a Central Bank report published on Monday.

Analysts now believe the Brazilian economy will grow by 0.97% this year, according to the bank’s most recent Focus Bulletin, after analysts cut their GDP (gross domestic product) growth forecasts for an eighth consecutive week.

The figures, based on a survey of around 100 Brazilian economists, are the worst estimate recorded since the Central Bank began publishing the data. Last week the figure stood at 1.05%.

The news is yet another blow to the economic credentials of the government of President Dilma Rousseff, who is seeking re-election in October, and is also likely to hit confidence in Latin America’s largest economy, already hampered by low confidence and concerns over above-target inflation.

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