Brazil: Economic growth disappoints in 2012
March 1, 2013
In the fourth quarter, GDP increased 0.6% over the previous quarter in seasonally adjusted terms. The figure was above the 0.4% expansion observed in the third quarter (previously reported: +0.6% quarter-on-quarter) but came in below last month's LatinFocus Consensus Forecast of a 0.8% rise. The reading represented the fastest pace of growth observed since Q2 2011. Compared to the same quarter the year before, the economy added 1.4%, up from the 0.9% increase tallied in Q3. Despite the improvement in Q4, GDP grew at a sluggish 0.9% pace in the full year 2012, well below the 2.7% increase observed in 2011.
On the domestic side, private consumption expanded 1.2% over the previous quarter (Q3 2012: +1.0% qoq), while government consumption added 0.8% (Q3: 0.0% qoq). Moreover, fixed investment rose for the first time since the third quarter of 2011 and increased 0.5%, contrasting the 1.9% decrease tallied in Q3.
On the external side of the economy, exports of goods and services rose 4.5% (Q3: +0.3% qoq), while imports rebounded from a 7.5% decline in the third quarter to a 8.1% expansion in the fourth.
The Central Bank expects GDP to grow 3.3% up to the third quarter of 2013, according to its Inflation Report from December. LatinFocus Consensus Forecast panellists expect the economy to expand 3.3% in 2013, which is down 0.2 percentage points from last month's estimate. For 2014, the panel sees GDP growth accelerating to 3.8%.