Brazil's Industrial Output Rises in March But Down over Q1

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Industrial production in Brazil rose in March, but ended the first quarter with a negative print, highlighting the challenges for the sector amid problems in global chains and a domestic scenario marked by high interest rates and inflation, Reuters reported. Industrial output grew 0.3% in March from February, government statistics agency IBGE said on Tuesday, slightly above the 0.2% increase projected in a Reuters poll of economists. Still, it stood 2.1% below the level in February 2020, before the onset of the pandemic, the agency said. Production in March retreated 2.1% from a year earlier, better than the 3% drop estimated in the poll. But in the first quarter of the year, it fell 4.5% compared to the same period in 2021, according to IBGE. Andre Macedo, the agency's research manager, said factors that make it difficult for industry to resume remain, such as increased production costs amid the scarcity of some raw materials. Read more.