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Meirelles Says 2010 Brazil Elections Pushing Up Futures Yields

October 5th, 2009
Central Bank President Henrique Meirelles1

Brazil’s Central Bank President Henrique Meirelles

Brazil’s Central Bank President Henrique Meirelles said yields on interest rate futures reflect investor uncertainty about the course of economic policy after next year’s elections.

“Evidently there’s a discussion about what economic policy will look like in January 2011” when the next government takes office, Meirelles told reporters in Istanbul. “If you think that inflation will rise as a result of an economic policy applied after January 2011 then you are pricing in now that the market perspective for inflation will increase before then.”

The overnight futures contract for July delivery ended trading yesterday at 9.19 percent, suggesting traders predict the central bank will raise the benchmark rate to about 11.01 percent by that month from a current record low of 8.75 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The former FleetBoston Financial Corp. banker said investor expectations that policy makers globally will have to withdraw fiscal and monetary stimulus as the recovery gains momentum was also spurring bets that inflation would quicken.

Still, he said the fears were unfounded because “nobody thinks” the next government will put at risk the economic stability Brazilians have come to value over the past decade.

The central bank halted seven months of rate cuts in September on signs Latin America’s biggest economy is recovering faster than expected. Inflation, stoked by higher demand and increased public spending, will rise above the 4.5 percent mid- point of the government’s target in the first quarter of 2011, policy makers said in their Sept. 25 inflation report.

Brazil’s $1.6 trillion economy emerged from a recession in the second quarter. Gross domestic product expanded 1.9 percent in the April-through-June period from the previous quarter.

Meirelles, who was in Istanbul attending the annual meeting of the International Monetary Fund, said the latest economic data from Germany and the U.S. show the global economy may be recovering stronger than previously expected.

“The risk of a double-dip recession is less today than it was in other moments,” he said.

By Joshua Goodman

http://www.bloomberg.com


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