Journalist, Washington D.C.
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Dec 3, 2013

Argentina jacks up currency controls to stem reserves loss

BUENOS AIRES, Dec 3 (Reuters) – Argentina toughened its
currency controls on Tuesday to stem a dramatic depletion of its
international reserves by making it more costly for Argentines
to travel abroad and buy foreign goods with their credit cards.

Shut out of financial markets since a massive default a
decade ago, the Argentine government for three years now has had
to burn up reserves generated mainly by grain exports to finance
its imports and pay debts.

Dec 1, 2013

Cuban doctors tend to Brazil’s poor, giving Rousseff a boost

JIQUITAIA, Brazil (Reuters) – They were heckled and called slaves of a communist state when they first landed, but in the poorest corners of Brazil the arrival of 5,400 Cuban doctors is being welcomed as a godsend.

The program to fill gaps in the national health system with foreign doctors, mainly from Cuba, could become a big vote-winner for President Dilma Rousseff as she eyes a second term in next year’s election despite fierce opposition from Brazil’s medical class.

Nov 7, 2013

Brazilian leader’s strategy bolsters re-election chances: poll

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is coasting into an election year as clear favorite, but she must do more to curb violence and corruption to maintain her popularity, a poll showed on Thursday.

Rousseff has been recovering from the pounding her approval ratings took after the massive protests in June against corruption, poor public services and the high cost of living, according to the poll commissioned by the private transport sector lobby CNT and conducted by pollsters MDA.

Nov 7, 2013

Dilma Rousseff’s strategy bolsters re-election chances – poll

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is coasting into an election year as clear favourite, but she must do more to curb violence and corruption to maintain her popularity, a poll showed on Thursday.

Rousseff has been recovering from the pounding her approval ratings took after the massive protests in June against corruption, poor public services and the high cost of living, according to the poll commissioned by the private transport sector lobby CNT and conducted by pollsters MDA.

Nov 4, 2013

Brazil’s local Internet data storage plan runs into opposition

BRASILIA/SAO PAULO (Reuters) – A government plan to shield Brazil from alleged U.S. spying by forcing global Internet companies to store data on Brazilian users inside the country has run into mounting opposition in Congress, politicians said on Monday.

The legislation was proposed by President Dilma Rousseff following revelations that the U.S. National Security Agency conducted surveillance on her emails and phone calls, along with those of average Brazilian citizens.

Oct 31, 2013

Brazil primary budget deficit soars to biggest since 2008

BRASILIA, Oct 31 (Reuters) – Brazil’s primary budget deficit
swelled to its biggest in nearly five years in September,
central bank data showed on Thursday, surprising economists who
had expected a surplus.

Brazil posted a primary budget deficit of 9.048 billion
reais ($4.1 billion) in September, contrary to
expectations of a small 100 million reais surplus according to a
Reuters poll with 14 economists.

Oct 28, 2013

Brazil to insist on local Internet data storage after U.S. spying

SAO PAULO/BRASILIA, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Brazil, seeking to
shield its citizens from alleged U.S. spying, is pushing ahead
with its plan to force global Internet companies to store data
obtained from Brazilian users inside the country, according to a
draft of the law seen by Reuters.

Despite opposition from multinational software, hardware and
telecommunications companies, President Dilma Rousseff is
pressing lawmakers to vote as early as this week on the law,
sparked by disclosures of widespread U.S. spying on Brazilian
telecommunications data.

Oct 25, 2013

Facebook executives coach Brazil politicians before Internet vote

BRASILIA (Reuters) – As Brazil threatens to impose strict new regulations on American Internet companies, Facebook offered some of its top politicians free advice this week on how to win “friends” and maximize “likes” on their webpages.

Facebook’s tips on using social media came as politicians geared up for a 2014 general election and as Congress prepared to vote on legislation that could severely restrict the way companies like Facebook, Twitter and Google operate in Brazil.

Oct 23, 2013

Brazil needs reforms, policy predictability to grow faster: IMF

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazil must take more decisive action to raise productivity and boost private investment if it is to restore robust growth to its once-booming economy, the International Monetary Fund said on Wednesday.

In its annual economic assessment of Brazil, the IMF also recommended continued tightening of monetary policy to curb inflation, which it sees remaining high due to a tight labor market and high consumption.

Oct 22, 2013

Brazil’s BNDES crowding out private banks from loans -OECD

BRASILIA, Oct 22 (Reuters) – Brazil’s state-run BNDES, the
largest development lender in the Americas, is crowding out
private-sector banks from corporate credit markets, and the
government should phase out financial support for the bank, the
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development said on
Tuesday.

In a survey of Brazil’s economy, the OECD also recommended
the government instruct BNDES to finance badly needed
infrastructure projects, small and medium enterprises and
innovation.