Brazil unemployment rate shy of estimates

|By:, SA News Editor

The unadjusted jobless rate in January rose to 4.8% from 4.3% in December, but was below forecasts for 5.1%. The seasonally adjusted rate was flat month-over-month.

The good economic news might be bad news for those hoping for an end to the rate hike cycle. "It's a tough message for the central bank," says economist Carlos Kawall. While the economy doesn’t seem to be going onto a very strong path, unemployment is still very low, and wages are still moving up. So it creates a real dilemma for the bank.”

Inflation accelerated to 5.91% in 2013 vs. the 4.5% target, and policymakers responded by hiking the benchmark Selic 325 basis points to 10.5%.

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