Brazil’s Economic Growth Bounces Back Under Lula and Defies High Interest Rates

Brazil’s economy roared back in the first months of 2023, lifted by bumper harvests that outweighed the drag of double-digit borrowing costs, Bloomberg News reported. Official data released on Thursday showed gross domestic product expanded 1.9% in the January-March period from the previous quarter, much more than the 1.2% median estimate of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. From a year ago, the economy grew 4%. A rebound in Brazil’s agriculture and a strong labor market helped deliver far better results than economists had forecast at the start of 2023, though few see it lasting. The highest interest rates in six years are weighing on business and consumer confidence — and have President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva clamoring for drastic changes in monetary policy. Read more.