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SAO PAULO — Industrial production in Brazil rose slightly in April from March, in line with economists’ estimates, but declined from the same period of 2021 and is yet to fully recover from the pandemic-related downturn, the government said on Friday.
Industrial output was up 0.1% in April from the month before , according to statistics agency IBGE, in line with the median estimate from a Reuters poll of economists.
It was the third consecutive monthly rise, IBGE said in a statement, adding the South American country’s industrial output had expanded 1.4% in that period.
But that was still not enough to offset the 1.9% drop in January, and local industry is far from recovering the ground lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic, IBGE said.
“There are still shortages issues and costs remain high, while interest rates are rising and making credit more expensive,” said the agency’s research manager, Andre Macedo.
He also noted that galloping inflation has been affecting disposable income, with Brazil’s central bank leading one of world’s most aggressive monetary tightening cycles to tame it, and that the labor market was still a problem with millions unemployed.
According to IBGE, Brazilian industrial production remains 1.5% below the levels seen in February 2020, prior to the pandemic-related downturn, and 18% below the peak in May 2011.
Industrial production was also down 0.5% in April from a year earlier, the ninth straight monthly decrease in the year-on-year comparison, but still better than expectations of a 0.8% decline from economists, IBGE added. (Reporting by Gabriel Araujo and Camila Moreira in Sao Paulo, Rodrigo Viga Gaier in Rio de Janeiro Editing by David Holmes and Mark Potter)
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