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Analysts concerned after Brazil rating downgrade

first_imgBRASÍLIA – Brazil must convince markets that it can grow its economy while also slash spending and curtail inflation, analysts said after the country’s credit rating sunk to near junk status.The Central Bank said Brazil would respond “robustly” to global economic challenges after Standard & Poor’s lowered its credit rating to BBB-, the lowest level for investment grade debt.S&P however described Brazil’s overall outlook as stable.The downgrade was “inconsistent” with economic conditions and “does not reflect Brazil’s solid performance and fundamentals,” the Finance Ministry said in a statement late Monday.China’s role in growth Analysts warn that they see hard times ahead for the World Cup and Olympic hosts, with one indicating that strong 2004-2010 growth had been on the coattails of strong demand from China.“Having enjoyed years of ‘easy growth’ in 2004-10, driven by Chinese demand, absorption of surplus labor and credit growth, the government and Congress have not pursued structural reforms to sustain growth,” said Robert Wood, Brazil analyst with Economist Intelligence Unit.Without policy adjustments in 2015, “the outlook will deteriorate further,” Wood said.São Paulo University’s Manuel Enriquez Garcia said that the years of strong growth fueled hopes that Brazil could become a major economic force. Now this hope “has been lost due to poor management of public accounts and a falloff in growth,” he said.Austin Rating’s chief economist Alex Agostini added: “There is no confidence that Brazil will control public spending and manage to bring down inflation in an election year.”Slow growth forecast Growth in Brazil has fallen off after peaking at 7.5 percent in 2010. In this World Cup year the government is forecasting growth of 2.5 percent, though markets are less optimistic.Brazil is also stuttering of late on trade, with a 2013 trade surplus of just $2.56 billion, its lowest in 13 years.The Central Bank said that, in response, it would combine macroeconomic austerity, exchange rate flexibility and use of liquid reserves to keep share price volatility in check.In announcing the downgrade, S&P cited the government’s unclear policy signals as it faces a weaker fiscal situation and slower growth.The agency said the rating cut reflects “slippage” in the government’s fiscal balance, and the prospects that slow growth over the coming years will leave the government less able to strengthen the balance.It said both cyclical and structural factors were behind the growth outlook, pointing to low investment, which was only 18 percent of GDP last year. Facebook Comments Related posts:Costa Ricans racked up credit card debt on TVs, travel during World Cup Soldiers occupy notorious Rio slum ahead of World Cup Costa Rica hopes La Sele will bring home a trophy, along with more tourists Brazil S&P downgrade forces a fiscal reckoninglast_img read more

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first_img 9 Comments   Share   Top Stories But regardless of whether the Cardinals hire Shurmur, how the quarterback situation plays out for the Vikings after their playoff run could relate to Arizona’s future. Minnesota has options at quarterback between Keenum, Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater, and it would be a smart bet that at least one of them is off next year’s Vikings squad.Keenum might be the fastest-rising free agent name after he quarterbacked Minnesota to a 13-3 record this year, throwing for 3,547 yards with 22 touchdowns to seven picks. He completed 67.6 percent of his pass attempts.Bradford, who will also become a free agent, only appeared in two games for the Vikings and is still dealing with a knee injury that required surgery to clean out loose particles. He experienced his best season as a pro in 2016, throwing for 3,877 yards and completing 71.6 percent of his passes for 20 scores and five picks in 15 games.The wild card of the bunch is Bridgewater, who on Dec. 17 returned from a career-threatening knee injury that cost him nearly two full seasons. Like Bradford, Bridgewater will face questions about his health in free agency.Would the Cardinals be interested in any of them?It’s hard to say, especially without a head coach in place. But in all likelihood, the Vikings’ offseason decisions will play some part of a domino effect for quarterback-needy teams like Arizona. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The Arizona Cardinals have neither a head coach nor a starting quarterback lined up for 2018.Fitting those two puzzle pieces is key. Will the new head coach and his staff be starting a veteran quarterback, or will the team go straight into the development of a young signal-caller?Based on what Cardinals general manager Steve Keim has said in the past, winning is paramount. So no matter whether Arizona drafts its quarterback of the future, expect that the team will explore the veteran quarterback market in depth. The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelocenter_img Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact If we’re to look one or two steps into the future, the Cardinals might be keeping an eye on the Minnesota Vikings’ quarterback situation. And as Minnesota waits out its playoff bye this week, Arizona could be piecing together a road map to kill two birds with one stone.Hiring Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur as head coach could do just that.Shurmur reportedly met with Arizona brass on Thursday, and many see him as the ideal fit in Arizona as one of the few coaches on the market with an offensive background. In addition, his potential hiring could come with good quarterback news.League sources of ESPN’s Adam Schefter believe Shurmur could bring quarterback and free-agent-to-be Case Keenum along with him, if Shurmur’s destination has an opening under center.Shurmur and Keenum have developed a close working relationship in which the two men “both think very highly of each other,” according to one source.It’s only natural, then, that if Shurmur’s new team needed a quarterback, the man he’s expected to look to would be Keenum, who has played like an MVP candidate this season in Minnesota.Shurmur has also received interest from the Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and New York Giants, according to Schefter. So, too, will Shurmur’s future. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and sellinglast_img read more